Give yourself a break. You are either working from home or navigating the unemployment process while taking on the role of teacher to your child(ren) and more likely than not feel like you are cooking and doing dishes around the clock. Not to mention the anxiety that comes with worrying for your parents, grandparents, friends, and children's health; and the depression that can be associated with isolation from the outside world. While we are feeling this mix of overwhelmingly bad emotions we are also being thrown post after post of people who are treating this quarantine like a vacation and are using this time to redo their entire house or pick up new skills. That is great and looking at the silver lining of extra time at home is a saving grace to many, but it is often leaving people feeling like somehow they are not being efficient enough during this pandemic.
That is just it; this is a pandemic, a worldwide crisis, not a productivity contest. Do not feel like just because you are not strapping on your shoes and sitting in rush hour traffic that your life has gotten any easier and this should be a breeze for you. We at PA Parent and Family Alliance want to remind you that if you are feeling sad, scared, anxious, and uneasy right now you are not alone. Remember that the person who is posting their newly redone fireplace could be using the project as a distraction from how worried they are about their grandmother and the person who tries a new fancy recipe every day is just trying to pass the time after being laid off from their dream job. Social media is a highlight reel of somebody's life and while you may not be able to see it on their perfectly curated page everybody is struggling in some way to adjust to this new normal.
With that being said we know that this quarantine is calling for creativity and resilience to keep your family fed, safe, and occupied. We wanted to highlight and explain how to navigate our #HomeTogether Resource page, something that can be an asset to you and your entire family. The resource page can link you to nearly 400 resources ranging from crisis support hotlines to boredom busters to educational resources for every age.
The purpose of #Hometogether
A positive to come out of all of this is the way that people are working to be more connected than ever. Companies and organizations around the globe have offered free or discounted options to their online services in order to do their part in supporting people through the pandemic. Other companies are creating entirely new online platforms in order for parents, families, and children to try and maintain some normalcy and utilize their beloved companies and services from the safety of their homes. From HBO offering free streaming until the end of April, to Disney creating and offering free online classes taught by their Imagineers the resources are vast and very cool.
Not only does the page link you to online resources that can pass time and teach you and your family something new but also to resources that could help you get food on your table or give you valuable information on how to properly file for things like unemployment. This page is designed to be a one-stop-shop of anything you might need right now. A lot of people need help and are not even aware of resources that could be right down the street from them.
How to use it
The first thing you will need to do is to go to our website and click on our For Families section and then the #hometogether resource page. You will immediately have nearly 400 resources at your fingertips. If you are just browsing to see if there is anything that is of interest to you simply scroll through the resources and see if anything catches your eye.
If you are going in with a purpose; such as educational resources, or crisis lines utilize the filter feature. If you click The"Filter" button, and then "Add filter" you will be able to narrow down the resources you are viewing. The easiest way for you to get exactly what you want is to click on "Title" and change it to "Audience." After that, you will see a menu that pops up that will show you all of the categories that our resources are broke up into. If you are seeking resources that will help you practice healthy mental wellness and can help you cope with your anxiety right now select the "Mental Wellness" tag and scroll through all of the resources related to that. If you are trying to get your kids settled for a few minutes so you can make an important call and want to have them focus on something that is age-appropriate, safe, and free click on the "Boredom Buster" tag and find something that fits their interests. Maybe you find yourself going a little stir crazy since your gym closed and you want to have some time for yourself with one of the many at-home-workouts linked under the "Fitness" tag.
Everything is changing so quickly, and the #hometgether resource page is keeping up
It seems as though every time you pick up your phone there is new breaking news, often news that debunks the breaking news from 10 minutes ago. We are aware of how fastly things have been changing and are keeping the resources up to date. This is a live resource page meaning that it is being edited and updated daily, often hourly. We want to make sure that families are able to access what they need when they need it and in order to do that we add newly found resources every day.
Right now you are most likely missing a lot of people. Missing your parents, your friends, and probably human contact as a whole. In a time where things are scary and uncertain, we must find new ways to connect. The #Hometogether page aims to do just that. While you cannot physically reach out to your neighbors or friends for help, with the internet anybody around the world can be that support system. If you need help, seek it. If you are not sure how to find what you need; check out our resource page to see if what you need is there. In case it is not we want to work to make sure every parent and family member who utilizes our page can get connected with the help they need. Chances are you are not the only person seeking something so let us know if we don't have what you are looking for and we will find it. We may all be at home, but we are all in this together.
Not finding what you need? Let us know what that is by clicking on the video above. Either respond with a video, an audio message, or through text.
Remember we're here for you. Just reach out.