Isolated in Lockdown? Talk to Me!

An ecosystem of initiatives focused on building leaders for a better world, the Blue Ribbon Movement (BRM) engages students through its community-connect fellowship program on civic engagement and finding alternate responses to community challenges. When the ongoing pandemic brought life to a standstill, the BRM community was pushed to think about what was required in these unprecedented times. Realising that individuals were feeling overwhelmed by the uncertainty, BRM came up with the idea of an online listening space christened Channel 5. The intention was to create a safe space online where people can share their experiences and feel supported, as a way of preventing mental health breakdowns that may result from the stressful circumstances that many people are facing during the pandemic.

So far BRM has had ten such virtual sessions where over 130 people of all age groups have participated from all over India. “People expressed feelings of loneliness, fear, stress and exhaustion,” says Convener Kejal Savla. To help alleviate these feelings, sessions focused on remembering cherished memories, artistic expressions, sharing music, collective singing and reflections. Participants reported feeling joyful and optimistic after these sessions. This April BRM also went online with its quarterly community event, Fools Forum, which facilitates cross-learning through meaningful conversations.

You can find BRM online on Instagram and Facebook to register for future sessions of Channel 5.