Northumberland mum proud to receive Covid act of kindness award after helping communities during pandemic
A mother-of-two who ensured communities were not left isolated during the pandemic has been honoured for her vital work.
Kischa Gair, from Morpeth, has been named the Northumberland winner of the Covid Acts of Kindness Community Award.
The awards, organised by the public health campaign BeatCovidNE, celebrate outstanding individuals in local communities across the region, with one winner from each of the seven local authorities.
At the beginning of lockdown, Kischa created a Facebook Covid support group for the four villages around Ellington, which still has more than 700 members.
With Kischa at its engine, the group shared local and Covid updates, initiated psychological and home education support as well as delivered shopping and food parcels to vulnerable residents by joining up with existing local initiatives.
From fund-raising competitions to encouraging food and toy donations, Kischa has continued to do all she can to support those in need within her community as restrictions have eased.
Her acts of kindness have gone on to inspire a committed group of volunteers who support her initiative and work to help as many people as possible in and around Ellington.
During her nomination, one person wrote: “Kischa is the type of person who puts everyone else, family and community – she is a true local hero.”
Kischa, 30, said: “While it’s so lovely and heartwarming to have recognition of my efforts during lockdown, I’d like to emphasise that none of this would have been possible without the help of my entire community.
“From food donations to packing parcels and handing out activity packs – all of my neighbours have clubbed together to make sure everyone is OK.
"We are a small but mighty region, and I’m proud to be from this corner of the globe.”
Amanda Healy, chairwoman of the Association of Directors of Public Health North East and director of public health for County Durham, said: “First and foremost I’d like to thank everyone who submitted a nomination.
"We were overwhelmed by the number of inspiring acts of Covid kindness we received from right across the region.
“Our seven winners, aged from 14 to over 70, are a testament to the fact that no matter your age you can make a difference. Their varied acts of kindness demonstrate the power of the north east spirit.
“Myself and my fellow judges were humbled to read all of the nominations and although it was an extremely hard decision, we are delighted to announce these seven winners as those who truly embody the region’s renowned goodwill.
“The fact that all of our winners are continuing to support their local communities is a reminder that Covid is still circulating in our communities.
“It’s important we also remember that simple acts of kindness – such as wearing face coverings in crowded places, socially distancing when out and about, meeting outdoors when possible, self-testing regularly and isolating if we test positive – help to protect each other and those at risk.”
In November, all seven winners will be invited to their individual local civic centres to be recognised for their civic service to their local community.
For more on the award visit www.beatcovidne.co.uk