In the local community where I live, we have the highest number of people living with Dementia. Once this was prevalent for the more mature members of society, but with the Covid crisis, this has been highlighted across all generations, cultures and backgrounds. It has also highlighted the inequalities between the rich and the poor, social class and race. Loneliness has become the new illness during this crisis. Touch, hugs, kisses have been lost and children and adults of all generations and ages feel the loss and need for connection.
The need stretches across all age groups. The elderly feel isolated in their own homes. Not being able to see their children and grandchildren. Many live alone and seek the comfort of their family and friends. It has been a year that we cannot forget. The young are imprisoned in their own homes, unable to see their friends, teachers and be free to run around and enjoy what youth feels like.
The cultural differences that were held together by strong ties in communities seem to have loosened causing cultural divides and isolation. For example, going to holy places of worship, charity events, cultural events, festivals and places to have fun and share memorable moments.
For mental health and wellbeing in the community at all levels, intergenerational, different ages, backgrounds will be a challenge for the next few years. The effects that this isolation has created is yet to be seen and evaluated.