A wide and varied range of activities and resources for all ages is available across Fingal as part of the new “In This Together” campaign.
This is the second phase of the Government’s Community Call, but Fingal County Council staff have already been creating, supporting and promoting activities for residents to do or get involved in while still following Covid-19 restrictions.
The ‘In This Together’ campaign aims to provide everyone in Ireland with ways and activities to Stay Connected, Stay Active, and take care of their Physical and Mental Wellbeing throughout the Covid-19 emergency.
The campaign encourages each of us to set a target of a new daily activity to help feel a little healthier and happier as we deal with Covid-19.
Useful advice is being promoted to help people of every age group cope with the ongoing restrictions, whether they are looking after children, dealing with self-isolation, preparing for the Leaving Cert, or coping with the challenges imposed by the current measures.
The Mayor of Fingal, Cllr. Eoghan O’Brien, said: “Community wellbeing has been a key part of Fingal County Council’s Call to COVID-19 since the very beginning. We have kept our parks and beaches open so that people can get physical exercise while adhering to the social distancing rules and we have used our many online communications channels to create a variety of initiatives to engage citizens cocooning or restricted to within 2km of their homes.
“The creativity coming from our staff has been tremendous and that in turn has been matched by the citizens of Fingal.”
There are plenty of activities for residents to stay fit and healthy that have been uploaded online or promoted through other channels. These include keeping to a routine, finding and creating a workspace for yourself if working from home, sticking to planned breaks and mealtimes, remembering to eat healthy, and to remain in contact with friends and family. Maintaining social activity in our lives, getting up, moving and speaking regularly to family, colleagues and our social networks will help us all to look after ourselves and support each other.
AnnMarie Farrelly, Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, said: “I am pleased that the investment Fingal County Council has made down through the years in areas like Libraries, the Arts, Sports, Heritage and Events is already reaping a rich dividend for our citizens as we promote physical and mental well-being through a variety of programmes and, in this era of restricted travel, through an array of communications channels.
“I cannot impress enough the importance of every citizen taking personal responsibility for looking after their physical and mental health at this very stressful time. I also want to appeal to everybody to keep an eye out for those most vulnerable members of our community who are cocooned and need support. A small gesture of a phone call or a note through the door may be of great benefit to a neighbour at this time.” ‘In This Together’ draws together a huge range of activities to pursue in your home, your locality, by yourself, with family members or with friends online.
Fingal staff have already been creating and promoting activities to stay connected and support the ‘In This Together’ Initiative and together with the agencies and organisations represented on the Community Call Forum will continue to come up with further plans and programmes over the coming weeks.
Some of the initiatives underway include the work of the Fingal Public Participation Network to capture a “good new stories diary’ which will showcase the fantastic solidarity actions by the community across Fingal.
We also want to ensure that those who do not have access or use online information are included. A Wellbeing Activity Booklet developed between our Community Team in Dublin 15 and our Age Friendly Co-ordinator will be delivered to 2,000 older or vulnerable people cocooning at home. It has all the tips and activities that people can take part in.
This along with a ‘stay connected’ project between schools and senior citizens will support elderly and vulnerable people in their own homes. The latest digital edition of Fingal News is now available online and copies have also been printed and will be delivered to older and vulnerable people who are cocooning across the County. It contains valuable information to help our citizens feel connected at this time.
Margaret Geraghty, Director of Community and Housing in Fingal County Council added: “As we continue through the restrictions and guidelines during the Covid-19 emergency it is important that we take care of ourselves as best as we can. I am delighted that across Fingal there are a range of services and initiatives to support people to do that. We have a strong community network in Fingal, and we are keen to support activities through our community groups to help people maintain good physical and mental wellbeing. The Covid-19 Grant Funding Scheme provides grants to community and voluntary groups in Fingal who are participating in the Community Call response to the pandemic.
“The Wellbeing programme is the second phase of the overall Community Call programme with the first phase being the establishment of the Community Call Forum and the Community Call Helpline. I am happy to say that Fingal staff have been very busy coming up with new plans and ideas to support our citizens and continue to provide our services in new and innovative ways.”
Residents looking for escapism, new learning opportunities, or help in keeping their children’s minds active can look up the content created by the Fingal Libraries team via their many online channels.
YouTube channel: https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=3oM22D-m3X4 with story times, online classes, craft ideas and more.
Online photography classes.
May Day photography competition and quiz.
Artists’ Works - free music and art classes e-service from Fingal Libraries.
21 day online Irish language challenge.
Book gifting initiative to traveller children
4-week session of coding classes starting 27th April.
Comics App – Fingal Libraries provides free access to comics and graphic novels.
Freegal music app – 15million songs in a variety of genres to stream or download free of charge from Fingal Libraries.
For those who do not have access to online content, work is also underway to commence a library book delivery service for housebound and over 70’s cocooning.
There are plenty of other activities that people can get involved with that Fingal County Council are promoting across various channels alongside the services that are being provided for the vulnerable members of our community, such as:
Fingal Digifit – A home workout video series encouraging citizens of all ages and abilities to get fit during the Covid-19 crisis.
Wellbeing Activity Booklet – Developed by the Covid-19 Fingal Community Call Project for older and housebound people currently cocooning.
Tips for Young People - Fingal Comhairle na nÓg have provided tips on how young people can spend their spare time.
Community Hubs – Elderly vulnerable citizens receive a daily visit from community volunteers observing social distancing.
Online Arts Service - Fingal Arts Office is providing online clinics for Artists and are live streaming arts projects.
Kids Skills Challenge – A daily online sports challenge to encourage children to keep active.
Housing Information Videos – A suite of informative videos for citizens needing to access housing support services during the COVID-19 crisis.
Stay Connected – A You Tube channel from Fingal Libraries with story times, online classes, craft ideas and lots more being added weekly.
Books for Traveller Children – A book gifting initiative which is distributing gift bags to traveller children across the county.
Irish Language Challenge – A 21 day online Irish language challenge to increase your cúpla focal.
Information on all these wellbeing activities and a lot more is available from www.fingal.ie and Fingal County Council’s social media channels.