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Today, 23rd March 2021, marks one whole year since the UK Lockdown was first announced. It’s been an extremely difficult year for everyone, filled with loss of loved ones, struggles with physical and mental health, widespread food shortages and the sharing of misinformation which perpetuated fears and anxieties.

But the City of Bradford persevered, and today we are celebrating the incredible work that has been and still is being carried out across the district within the Voluntary and Community Sector, and the dedicated staff and volunteers who have made it possible.

Since August 2020, the Race Equality Network has been delivering the Bradford Council funded COVID-19 Prevention Project, working in partnership with 26 grass-roots organisations across the district. To showcase these efforts, we have produced a short video which premiered YouTube this morning.

The short film, REN: One Year of Lockdown is available to watch and share via this link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xZhdp4vu7I

You will see in the film that the support provided by our partners has taken many forms, including food provision, creative therapy, mental health support, tuition and mentoring, befriending, physical exercise classes, Zoom calls and so much more. While COVID-19 has been a time of crisis in which these lifelines have been essential, providing this type of support is not unfamiliar to many of the community centres across Bradford.

What is new and unfamiliar however, is the urgent need for PPE, social distancing, vaccination information, hand sanitiser and the enforcing of strict guidelines that prevents people from seeing their family and friends. This has been difficult and uncomfortable to enforce, with different spoken languages making the UK government rules even harder to explain.

REN would like to thank each and every staff member, volunteer and organisation that has dedicated themselves to providing the much-needed support to their community.

For more information on the project or COVID-19 in general, please head over to COVID-19 page on our website.

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