A Dose of Inspiration

There’s plenty to be concerned about these days, and it can be difficult to stay calm and hopeful when dealing with the challenges many of us are facing personally as well as the daily news about the COVID-19 pandemic. That said, it can be uplifting to see how members of our community near and far are coming together in incredible ways – whether it’s stepping up to provide a valuable service, raising funds for those in need or simply trying to brighten their neighbour’s day.  Here’s a sampling of the many acts of kindness happening around us during the pandemic:

Medical students helping their future colleagues: Ottawa medical students whose classes and clinical rotations are cancelled are doing whatever they can to help their future colleagues during this time – for example, creating a service that matches student volunteers with front-line workers who need child care and other household errands done. Now, nearly 60 medical students are providing child care to allow doctors, nurses and paramedics to get to work, while another group is providing a grocery delivery service to seniors. “To have someone trust you to take care of their children is an honour,” said Simran Aggarwal, one of the project’s founders.

High-end chefs cooking for low-income families: Some of Ottawa’s most celebrated chefs, including chefs from Coconut Lagoon and Thali restaurants, North & Navy, Absinthe and Thyme & Again are working with Food for Thought Café to provide thousands of meals a week to homeless families living in shelters without access to kitchen equipment, many of whom are refugees. “A lady came to us and said, ‘we never thought we were going to see a hot meal or real food in this space,’ because they live in a motel facility and the only kitchen equipment they have is a microwave oven and a mini-fridge” says Food for Thought Cafe director Abhijit Potdar.

Everyday people finding ways to raise money or brighten their neighbour’s day: This 101-year old WW2 veteran in Victoria, B.C. is hoping to raise $101,000 for COVID-19 relief efforts by walking laps around his retirement home courtyard every day. And this Toronto resident is helping to keep her neighbours active and their spirits high by offering day (weather permitting) line dancing classes on the street in her neighbourhood.

Visit CBC Ottawa’s One Good Turn or the City of Ottawa’s Good News pages to find many more inspiring stories like the ones profiled in this article, and bookmark those pages to get your daily dose of inspiration and positivity.  You may be inspired to create your own act of kindness or maybe you have something you would like to share!