Living Streets Association | 2020 August

The young people from Living Streets Association held an online meeting in the autumn holidays to discuss issues about how to be healthy and happy during these uncertain times of the pandemic. People were now studying ways to enhance their immune systems against viruses. In addition to regular exercises and implementing personal hygiene, young people decided that the healthiest things they can do is to establish connections with others and create opportunities to give. However, due to Covid restrictions, they needed to be a little more creative to spread warmth to people.

Because people were unable to go out to meet friends and family, they naturally found social interactions among those closest to them, immediate family members and neighbours.  The spirit of Living streets became visible across the entire Canberra community during these times. Numerous bears were sitting behind windows and the streets were covered with colourful chalk graffiti. These little acts of kindness encouraged our young people to continue to bring warmth and encouragement to those around them while complying with government advice.

To continue the tradition of the Easter Bunny visit during Covid, we ran it a bit differently, sending him to dance outside the neighbours’ windows and on their driveways with a friendly message. Both children and parents could be seen dancing and laughing at the sight. The young people also brainstormed other activities that could keep individual families active and happy. We thought of indoor activities such as handicrafts like crochet and knitted quilts, and outdoor street games like hopscotch, stick hut building in the woods, and the popular city-wide bear hunt. The young people also stuck little pictures of bears all over the playground for a smaller version of this bear hunt. These are all ideal activities that you could also apply in your own street. Have a go at actualising your ideas and see how it brings joy and appreciation to your neighbours!

The quote “Charity begins at home”, inspired us to also consider how our parents and family can be cared for. Because parents still had the role of looking after the family, the young people creatively brainstormed ways to bring play and warmth into homes. These ideas included fun ways to prepare meals for the family, baking snacks, sharing housework, gardening, maintaining peace in the home and not quarrelling with siblings etc. By sharing these ideas, we wanted children to support their parents and help the family in maintaining a strong bond.

In addition, the young people were also eager to create an Instagram Account for Living Streets. The purpose was to allow more people to see our activities, and share a little warmth with the neighbourhood. We also hoped that, with this platform, we could engage more young people and inspire them with our content.

To support the young people in the applications for university admission and job searching, Living Streets Association cooperated with the WCA (Watson Community Association) to provide certificates for volunteering.