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Shelter and support during lockdown

How technology and human kindness will help us through these challenging times

By Graeme Gordon, Praxity Executive Director


Week four of our lockdown and I was awoken at 4am this morning by my wife who pointed out there was water dripping in through the bedroom roof. Our bedroom has a flat roof and heavy rain had penetrated it during the night, so we had to take radical action: a bucket on top of a groundsheet across the bed to catch the drips, and, of course, we were then wide awake.

Not a great start to a weekend but it got me thinking about the importance of having basic shelter and support during times of crisis.

Like most of the world’s population at this current time, we have been told to “stay at home” or “shelter in place”. We are lucky in that we have a home to shelter in. Many do not.  However, what happens when, like last night, your home no longer feels like a shelter? Equally, what happens if you are isolated and have little or no means to communicate with the outside world?


I know many families across the globe are, like my own family, separated under this unprecedented pandemic situation. Fortunately, thanks to new technologies, many of us today have numerous ways of communicating with, and seeing, our loved ones and friends, which were not available even ten years ago, let alone in 1919 when the Spanish Flu pandemic struck. So, let’s count our blessings.

Yes, this time around, most governments were either late with their responses to the pandemic or took other missteps – and maybe some still are – but we are generally much better informed than our ancestors were 100 years ago, and we can communicate more easily. We have so many more technological aids to maintain connections to the outside world and maintain our ‘sanity’. We should consider how comparatively lucky most of us are today.


But perhaps the biggest aid to overcoming this current pandemic is the undoubted heroism of not only our frontline medical staff and “community first-responders”, but also of regular “Joe Public” individuals of all backgrounds going the extra mile to ensure their community is properly looked after, fed and safe. It shows the true character of most members of our wonderful human race.

I want to do anything I can that will help make a difference for someone during these challenging times, and so, I hope, do you.

I want to wish you and all those you love, health and safety over the coming days, weeks and months. And remember, if myself or my team can help, we’re here for you, and if you can help others, you will have our support 100%.