In wonderful and difficult ways, the coronavirus pandemic has made clear how connected we all are. In ordinary times Ashwood would be celebrating community connections this month with our annual Serve-A-Thon. This year, the Serve-A-Thon committee has created a list of ideas for engaging with and supporting our community during COVID-19.

1. Take care of yourself. These are times of uncertainty and stress. Take time for self care. Get plenty of sleep and exercise. Listen to the birds sing. Consider keeping a journal.

2. Be kind to those who share your hunkering space. See this list of Random Acts of Kindness that Ms. Purdom shared with students in grade 5-6. It can easily be adapted for all ages.

3. Help our local nonprofit partnersTwo of our longtime nonprofit partners have asked the Ashwood community to help support their work by reaching out to their residents. Others may be in touch later this spring for helping hands.

  • The residents of Knox County for Long Term Care would love to receive handmade cards. They can be mailed to Knox Center, Activities Dept, 6 White St, Rockland, ME 04841.
  • Quarry Hill has requested videos of students reading stories and showing pictures, or videos of students playing instruments. Please click here for instructions and guidelines.

4. Help your community in other ways

  • Pick up trash on your walks and hikes.
  • Send thank-you cards to medical professionals and people working at essential services, so they know they’re appreciated.
  • Phone or write to neighbors, friends, relatives and acquaintances who live alone.
  • Loan a favorite book to someone while the libraries are closed.
  • Sew face masks. Follow this link to connect with a state-wide effort to provide face masks for Maine’s healthcare organizations.

5. Tap into online communities that post volunteering opportunities:

6. Support your Community Many farmers, fishermen, and other producers across Maine have added alternative ways for customers to obtain food, etc. using physical distancing. Connect with them directly using this spreadsheet, compiled and kept up to date by the University of Maine cooperative extension. 

Sarah Ewing, Serve-A-Thon Coordinator