Jan Philip, Throughcare Worker (Residential Team) at Rossie Young People’s Trust in Montrose, Angus, shares a story of how the young people supported by the Trust are showing kindness and compassion to the local community during Covid-19.
Rossie is a charity based in Montrose that aims to protect and improve the wellbeing of young people aged 12-18 in both secure and residential services. It is a multi-disciplinary organisation, providing services in care, education, specialist interventions and throughcare.
With the support of key staff at Rossie and community support from Volunteer Action Angus, Simmer Doon Soups and Montrose Community Trust, the young people have been supporting individuals and families in the community through acts of kindness and compassion.
Examples of the acts of kindness have included the creation of baked goods and personalised items such as painted shapes, bookmarks, virtual hugs, stained glass, packets of wildflower seeds, mental health information, rainbows and pictures, all with messages of support and encouragement. These gifts have been sent to those who are socially isolated at this time, families, local GP surgeries and other NHS practices. The spirits of the Montrose community have been lifted and this initiative has changed people's perceptions of, and relationships with, the young people in care.
Every week the young people are so excited to read the feedback on the Facebook page about their baking and goodies. Angus Carers wrote a lovely letter and sent some chocolates to the young people thanking them for the 'compassion' goodie bags that they had received for all the sheltered housing complexes in Montrose. The young people really appreciated this gesture.
One of our young people said:
“As a kid at Rossie I think it’s such a lovely idea especially with Covid-19. I loved feeling like I’ve made a difference to someone’s day especially when people are feeling lonely right now."
This project demonstrates the connection that can be nurtured between young people and their local community and how the mental health and wellbeing is improved for everyone involved. We will encourage the young people to continue this type of activity post-lockdown so they can continue to build relationships with groups in the community and develop their sense of purpose and place.