Our new Pen-demic Pals project will reach the people that need a little bit of extra support during COVID19.

We have been delivering a successful befriending service to people in East Lancashire from almost a year now. As we announced earlier in the week, we have extended this service due to the current pandemic, but now we want to do more.

Prior to the extreme measures we now find ourselves in, our communities were already dealing with social isolation, loneliness and feeling scared about world events. Our staff team and volunteers are passionate about positive outcomes for every person and in response to the current situation are putting pen to paper.

From April 2020, every person accessing our befriending service, all looked after children and children going through child protection processes will receive a letter or card to show them they are not alone and that there is someone there, reaching out and making a positive connection with them.

As face to face meetings are in nobody’s best interest and knowing how important connections are, we are proud to announce the launch of our new service that will last for the duration of the COVID19 crisis. Our new ‘Pen-demic’ project will be spreading messages of joy and hope to the people who need it most and we are sourcing funding to send the young people a small gift, so they have something to enjoy during this period of social isolation.

Why pen-pals? What are the benefits to both the writer and the sender?

Here are just a few:

  • It gets us ‘off-line’ which in turn reduces our stress levels
  • Writing is a creative activity that requires us to be mindful and present
  • It’s good for our brains! Writing words on paper helps our brain function and cognition
  • Writing connects us, not only does it boost our mood, it spreads joy
  • Letters can be kept and re-read over and over again
  • It reminds us how to be grateful and thankful for what we have and the support networks we have access to
  • For many children and young people, especially those that are looked after by the local authority, it may be the first time they have ever received a letter of their own through the post.
  • It’s a skill we can get back that doesn’t involve technology. Go ‘old school’!

If you or anyone you know would benefit from using this new service and want to strike up a new friendship with a Pen-demic Pal, please contact [email protected] or contact one of our team via our website or live chat.

  • Call us on 0300 323 0965 for more information.

If you would like to volunteer for this project and become a Pen-demic Pal, contact our Volunteer Manager at [email protected]