Being a single parent can be hard but being a single parent during Covid is even harder. We’ve put together 8 ideas to help you support your single parent friends and family members.
Being a single parent can be tough. Being a single parent confined to your house with no one to share the load, no adult conversation, and no one else to come up with new ideas for entertaining a toddler is even tougher. At Frolo, we want to support single parents and help other people understand how to support them better too.
Read on for 8 practical ways you can help single parents ride out the Coronavirus pandemic.
Check in with them regularly. Social distancing is going to be tough for everyone, but the days can feel especially long – and the evenings especially empty – when you only have a four-year-old (or a monosyllabic teen) to talk to. A text or call to let them know you’re thinking of them can go a long way towards making a single parent feel less alone.
Help with supplies. If you’re going to the shops, ask them if there’s anything they need (unless they’re asking for 50 rolls of toilet paper). You can leave any shopping outside their house if they’re isolating due to symptoms.
Share resources. Found a great new educational game? Discovered an amazing way to keep a toddler quiet using nothing but a teaspoon and a post-it note? Share it with any single parents you know – we’re all going to need as many tricks up our sleeves as possible. You can see a round-up of the brilliant ideas frolos have come up with here in our single parent lockdown guide.
Make virtual plans. Having a coffee (or a wine) over Skype or Zoom can help break up the day and give you both something to look forward to. We’re using Zoom calls to keep frolos connected and chatting on the app – you can find more information about this here.
If you’re healthy, can you assist with childcare? One of the main challenges single parents are facing is being unable to work from home effectively due to a lack of childcare. A childcare circle, where you all take a day each and look after each other’s kids, could be an option as long as no one is showing symptoms and would free up a lot of time for catching up on work at home
Buddy up. Whether the single parent you know if a sibling, friend, or neighbour, make a plan together about what would happen if one of you got ill. Would you consider going into isolation together? How would you work together to ensure both of you had the supplies you need?
Shop small from afar. Single parents who are self-employed or who run small businesses will really be feeling the pinch at the moment. If everyone is staying at home, chances are their regular customers are too. If you normally support a business run by a single parent that you can’t visit at the moment, like a hairdresser, cafe, or shop, you could buy a voucher instead. You can redeem the value later and the cash flow will help them stay afloat now.
Reach out to hidden single parents and other vulnerable groups. If you’re healthy and not in an at-risk group, check out Covid Mutual Aid. They’re a volunteer organisation making sure that people get the resources and support they need. You can join your local group and distribute leaflets offering help to your neighbours. There could be a single parent you don’t know living around the corner who would love a helping hand.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Share this with friends and family to let them know how to support you.
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