Kindness and coronavirus: the people and brands making a difference during the coronavirus pandemic

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Lauren Geall
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From The Body Shop’s new initiative to donate products to NHS workers to the London hotels opening their doors to the homeless, these are the acts of kindness making a difference during the coronavirus outbreak.

As the UK prepares to enter its third week of lockdown to try and curb the spread of coronavirus, many of us are feeling overwhelmed and anxious. Right now, the future is uncertain: no one knows when the current measures are going to end, and how many people will be affected by the virus.

But among all of the terrifying headlines and disheartening updates, there are plenty of people and brands working hard to make the world a little brighter during this dark time. Across the country, people are going the extra mile to support their local communities, ensure the most vulnerable get what they need and celebrate the key workers on the frontline of the fight against coronavirus. 

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All in all, these good deeds are a reminder of how small, random acts of kindness really can have a massive impact, especially during such a difficult time.

So whether you’re feeling overwhelmed, anxious or hopeless at the moment, take some time out of your day to appreciate all the good that’s going on in the world. After all, sometimes all we need is a little reminder that, no matter how bleak everything may seem, there are always good people doing good things.

The Body Shop donated 225,000 items to NHS workers

Cosmetics brand The Body Shop donated 225,000 items to NHS workers to thank them for their selfless work in the face of the coronavirus outbreak.

The free items, which include soap, body lotions, face scrubs and other sweet-smelling items from the brand’s strawberry range, aimed to help frontline medical staff find “a few moments of respite” during their long shifts. 

The ethical beauty brand has also donated an incredible 100,000 bars of soap and 100,000 tubes of hand cream to the NHS’ new temporary Nightingale hospitals.

“This is our way of thanking the NHS workers on the frontline, risking their lives to save ours to help protect the communities we live in,” Linda Campbell, managing director of The Body Shop UK, told Metro.

Healthy recipe box service Mindful Chef is offering a discount to NHS workers

The healthy recipe box service Mindful Chef are offering NHS workers 30% off to keep key workers safe and healthy during the coronavirus pandemic.

NHS workers are being asked to email to access the discount – once they’ve sent the initial email they’ll receive a response with a code for 30% off.

This parking app is allowing the public to offer their private parking spaces to NHS workers for free

Popular parking app JustPark, which enables unused parking spaces to be listed for others to reserve and pay for in advance, is allowing users to list spaces for free so they can provide spaces for NHS workers.

JustPark is appealing to anyone who owns a parking space near an NHS hospital or medical centre to list it on the app so a healthcare professional or patient can have access to it.

In order to set up a free listing, customers can visit the dedicated coronavirus appeal page on the JustPark website. 

Vita Coco are thanking frontline workers by handing out free caseloads of coconut water

Frontline workers including medical staff, shopkeepers, teachers and waste collectors are the focus of a new campaign from coconut water brand Vita Coco which aims to thank them for their hard work in the fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

The campaign will see the company send out free caseloads of coconut water as a thanks for the hard work of the people putting themselves in harm’s way to keep life as normal as possible for the rest of us.

“We’re in pretty uncertain times right now,” the company wrote on Instagram. “But what is certain is that there are real heroes out there putting themselves at risk to either care for the vulnerable or simply make our lives as normal as possible.

“If you know anybody that deserves a thank you, DM us and we’ll send over a free case of coconut water.”

Pret A Manger is offering NHS staff a helping hand

The NHS staff at the frontline of the coronavirus outbreak are being offered free drinks and discounted food in a small show of appreciation for their work.

Pret A Manger announced this morning that they will be giving out free hot drinks to all NHS staff during the current pandemic, and will give them an additional 50% off other items such as sandwiches, pastries and cakes.

In a message posted across their social media channels, Pret said they wanted to thank the staff for their work.

“Dear NHS workers, your hot drinks are on the house from today, and we’ll take 50% off everything else,” the message read. “Thank you for everything you are doing. We look forward to serving you. With love, everyone at Pret.”

A #viralkindness campaign is making an impact all over the world

When Becky Wass from Falmouth found herself feeling helpless amid the onslaught of the coronavirus, she decided to try and do her bit by designing a shareable postcard for people to distribute in their communities.

The card, which gives tick-box options that offer a list of services for those who are self-isolating, including a “friendly phone call” or “urgent supplies”, has now gone viral, with people across the world adopting the practice to ensure the vulnerable people in their community get any and all of the support they need.

Speaking to Cornwall Live, Wass said: “I was talking to my husband John about how the news was quite hard-hitting and there wasn’t much we could actually do to make a positive difference.

“If just one person feels less lonely or isolated when faced with this pandemic, then I’ll feel better about it. Coronavirus is scary. Let’s make kindness go viral.”

Beauty Banks are raising money to provide people in poverty with essential hygiene items

In response to the news that people are stockpiling essential hygiene items including soaps and sanitary products, Beauty Banks founders Jo Jones and Sali Hughes have launched a GoFundMe campaign to ensure that people in poverty are still able to access the basics.

The #helpinghands appeal aims to “support people in the UK who can’t afford to keep themselves and their families as safe from coronavirus (Covid-19) as others.” This includes people who can’t afford to stockpile and live or stay in crowded environments including homeless shelters, refuges and safe-houses.

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The appeal comes after reports that food banks are running short on supplies because people are stockpiling essentials, meaning that those who couldn’t afford to stockpile in the first place still have no access to the basic products they need.

So far, the appeal has raised £95667, exceeding its £50,000 target.

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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and women’s issues. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time. You can find her on Twitter at @laurenjanegeall.

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