What is #mycovid19pledge?
The idea behind #mycovid19pledge was conceived in a conversation between a young cancer patient who is currently shielding and the NHS Youth Expert Advisors. The idea was co-produced with the youth members of the Children and Young People’s Transformation Board, the NHS Youth Forum and #iwill ambassadors. It’s impossible to have not heard about COVID-19. Young people may be at home at the moment but this has not stopped them from volunteering, taking up jobs as key workers, caring for loved ones and encouraging their peers online. We are asking you to share your #mycovid19pledge to change this, to highlight the role of young people in this crisis and to give young people a space to share how they are using their time. Your pledge can be anything: to continue self-isolating, be in bed before midnight, to message a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while, or making a commitment to volunteer.
This campaign will run across multiple platforms, including Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to encourage young people to share what they’ve been doing throughout this time to look after themselves, help others and support their community.
What are we pledging?
As one of the youth representations on the Children’s and Young People’s Transformation Board, #mycovid19pledge is to look after my parents (both of whom are key workers) . This time last year, I was busy trying to wrap up the dissertation for my intercalated Global Health degree.
The last thing on my mind when I was revising for my exams, trying to learn the difference between an endemic, epidemic and pandemic, was that a year later, was that I would be in the middle of the largest health crisis since the Spanish Flu in 1918.
It has forced the whole world to pause and perhaps that is what we needed (the ozone layer is definitely thanking us!). The silver lining in this situation for me has been being able to spend time with my parents, which was usually lost in the ‘daily grind’ of hospital shifts and life admin. We’ve been able to eat Iftar together almost everyday (the evening meal which breaks the day’s fast during Ramadan), something I would have been missing if it had been a ‘normal’ year at medical school. We’ve been given time to reset, let go of what isn’t serving us and think about our health. Yet who looks after our carers? This thought led to my pledge of looking after parents who are key workers (working proudly for the NHS!).
In the conversations that we have had with young people, we’ve heard from young carers, those struggling with staying with family whether that be due to the difficulties being trapped inside for autistic individuals, or LGBTQ teens with homophobic families. Many young people sit at the intersections of these groups, many struggling with food poverty, having recently lost jobs or family members to COVID-19. During COVID-19, young people have been very absent in the dialogue but their voices matter. We’re committed to making sure that youth voice is heard in the NHS and the youth sector, we’re doing our bit, be it big or small.
Our message is clear we’re physically apart but with the #mycovid19pledge we’re virtually together, (at least we have one place where we don’t need to worry about social distancing!) You can get involved by sharing your own #mycovid19pledge to showcase what you’re up to at this time, whether it be positive social action, messages of solidarity or self care. Simply record a video, take a picture or tweet your pledge! Make sure to use the hashtag #mycovid19pledge so we can see your pledge.
If you’d like you can even wear a uniform or t-shirt that presents an organisation you’re part of, in your video pledge. Do tag you friends to get involved too.
Below are some examples of pledges for some inspiration:
Hannah – NHS Youth Forum Member
Sonia – NHS Youth Forum Member and NHSBT Tissue Ambassador
Samya – NHS Youth Forum Member and Children and Young People’s Transformation Board Member
Mike – Paramedic and Children’s and Young People’s Transformation Board Youth Member
#mycovid19pledge is to volunteer for the NHS and support my community
#mycovid19pledge is to be in bed before midnight
#mycovid19pledge is to check in on the people that matter to me
This campaign was created in collaboration with young people and the support of organisations such as:
- NHS Youth Forum
- British Youth Council
- Association for Young People’s Health
- Step up to Serve
- The Scouts Association
- St. John’s Ambulance
- The Prince’s Trust
- CLIC Sargent
- Rising Arts Agency
Want to make a pledge? Open the partnership guidance here but please do be creative and come up with your own!