Written by Atrayee Dutt. Edited by Eden Gringart and Jordanne Stewart.
Artwork by Thanh Le.
The current COVID-19 pandemic has left people all around the world in a state of despair. Quarantine and self-isolation have caused people to become increasingly anxious about the current situation, the death toll, the health of their friends and families, and the economic crisis. The world is in a state of panic and anguish; however, not all hope is lost. Despite these challenging times, there has been a renewed strengthening of families, an increased sense of bonding in local communities, and through the internet, youth have found solace and optimism.
First, quarantine has brought people much closer to their families and helped them bond. Considering that the majority of the global population is now working from home, people have more time to spend with their loved ones. Breaks from hectic work schedules have created more opportunities for people to relax and spend their precious time with family. People worldwide are coming up with creative ideas to spend quality time with their families at home. For example, families are exercising together, having a movie and karaoke nights, cooking together, competitively playing board games, and much more. Themed dinner nights are a unique activity where families choose a particular movie, dress up as characters and eat specific food from the movie. For example, a family in the USA chose the movie “Ratatouille”, dressed up as those specific characters and cooked the titular dish for dinner. This is undoubtedly an innovative idea to have fun and distract themselves from the dangers of the outside world.
Another good thing that has risen out of this unfortunate situation is the increased resilience of the community. For instance, when an entire neighbourhood in Rome, Italy sang several uplifting songs harmoniously, the video of them singing went viral on Youtube. In Italy, neighbours are looking out for the elderly in their community and are making an effort to help and cheer them up whenever they can. People are doing their best to show their support for essential workers and delivery workers in several ways, through making them cards or baking them food, intending to lift their spirits and make them feel appreciated. This situation has brought families and communities closer than ever.
The use of the internet has been monumental in preserving optimistic and high morale for the youthful population. People have been rigorously following online workouts on various social media platforms such as TikTok, Youtube, and Snapchat, challenges to keep themselves fit. Online workout challenges where people follow similar routines are a great mood booster and keep up the motivation of the public. They also increase relatability between global communities and provide people with a feeling of belonging in an isolating time. Some graduating classes this year have held graduation ceremonies on platforms such as Zoom and Skype. Although they were disheartened, numerous celebrities have shared messages of hope and support to the graduating cohort, which lifted spirits.
An incredible act of solidarity was when the entire world showed their appreciation for doctors, nurses, and essential workers. The immense unification with which the world responded was profoundly breathtaking. People from the UK, India, Singapore, USA, and many other countries clapped, cheered, sang songs, and flickered their lights at a particular time. It was veritably mesmerising to hear the cheers and whistles. It truly restored my faith in humanity. The way everyone coordinated was enough to lift everyone’s spirits and motivate them.
Thus, even in these uncertain and dark times, a sense of belonging and closeness is present. Some people are feeling even more appreciated than before, such as critical workers and the elderly. I believe that as long as there is a sense of community, people all around the world will unite in harmony and incredible feats can be accomplished.