Tower Hamlets Together
Over the past few months, the communities of Tower Hamlets have come together to respond to an invisible challenge. One that brought with it unprecedented impacts and sadly, devastating consequences.
But it is at times of challenge that we also see the very best of the human spirit and in every corner of our wonderful borough, we have seen people selflessly putting their hands up to help others.
The local response to the pandemic has been second to none. It has been incredibly heartening to see so many volunteers, community groups, partner organisations and council staff working together from across our diverse communities to tackle coronavirus.
We want to say a very big thank you to everyone who has been working tirelessly to help keep Tower Hamlets healthy, safe and supported.
Tower Hamlets Together film: please watch and share to help thank our wonderful community
Thank you. To the 2,000 volunteers who helped deliver food parcels to vulnerable residents, free meals for children and families, PPE for carers and books for children. To the council staff who kept essential services running while supporting 14,739 self-isolating or shielding residents, talking to 13,346 residents over the phone and providing millions in rent and rate relief for community organisations and local businesses. To our partner organisations and community groups. To our local businesses. To our colleagues in transport and emergency services. To our health and care workers and everyone at the NHS. The list goes on.
But there’s another very important thank you, and that’s to you and everyone who played their part by simply staying home. We cannot underestimate the impact this had on protecting each other. By staying indoors and staying away from family and friends, you helped stop the spread.
You cheered on key workers and you clapped for our incredible carers every Thursday evening. You displayed rainbows in your windows, drew hearts on your footpaths, supported your children to learn from home, dropped supplies to your neighbours and reached out to someone who was lonely or anxious. Again, the list goes on.
Every single gesture, big or small, has helped us get through this challenging time together.
Together, you have shown that in Tower Hamlets, we protect our neighbours. That we are resilient with a collaborative spirit. That we can come together by staying apart. We will come out of this stronger than before.
Read our special edition Our East End for more on the community response to coronavirus.
Join the nation to say thanks on Sunday 5 July
We're taking part in a new national initiative called Together, which aims to bring people together and say a big thank you to everyone who is helping us through these difficult times.
There are lots of ways you can get involved throughout the week, with a particular focus on activity this weekend to coincide with the birthday of the NHS on Sunday 5 July.
You're encouraged to:
- Throughout the week, say a personal 'thank you' by displaying a message in your window. Get creative, or use one of many great templates.
- On the evening of 4 July, put a light in your window to remember those we have lost. This will form part of a collective, national memorial.
- On 5 July, join a one-off clap for carers at 5pm – the biggest yet. At 5.05pm, raise a glass, mug or cuppa to thank each other – our friends, family and neighbours – for looking out for us, helping the vulnerable, or simply doing the right thing and staying at home. Afterwards, stay outside to chat to your neighbours or reach out to someone who may be lonely or isolated.
Find out more about how to take part on the Together website.
You can also share our #TowerHamletsTogether film on social media to help thank our wonderful community.
A huge thanks to all the partner organisations, community groups and individuals for taking part in the making of our film. This includes:
- Aspen Court Care Home
- Beaumont Court Care Home
- Bow Sewing Centre
- Canary Wharf Group
- Community Kitchen
- Dabirul Islam Choudhury and family
- East London Central Synagogue
- East London Mosque
- Langdon Park School
- London Buddhist Centre
- London Fire Brigade
- Link Centre
- LinkAge Plus
- Manorfield Primary School
- Metropolitan Police
- Neighbours in Poplar
- Royal London Hospital (Barts Health NHS Trust)
- Mile End Hospital (Barts Health NHS Trust)
- Poplar HARCA
- Saffiyah Muhammed and family
- Sonali Gardens
- Shanty's Chemist Whitechapel
- St Hilda's
- St John's Church Bethnal Green
- Tower of London
- Tower Hamlets Homes
- Transport for London
- Volunteer Centre Tower Hamlets
- Wadajir Somali Community
- Westport Care Home
- Women's Inclusive Team (WIT)
- The council's children's services, enforcement officers, parks team, reablement team, waste services, John Onslow House, PPE team, Idea Stores and the Professional Development Centre
- And finally, Kois Miah for creating the film.
There are many other groups and individuals that have supported both the production of our film, as well as those that are supporting the community, and we would like to extend our sincere thanks to you as well.
Get involved in bringing #TowerHamletsTogether
Pictured above: Tribute to key workers in Bow by artist Peter Liversidge.
It's been heartening to see so many wonderful people and organisations stepping up to support those who need it.
If you're helping in the community, why not take a moment to share a photo or a story on social media using the hashtag #TowerHamletsTogether?
It could be anything from displaying your child's rainbow drawing in your window to dropping off essential supplies to a neighbour, or maybe you're a small business or organisation supporting people in a different way. Every little gesture is helping us get through this together.
Thank you to absolutely everyone for playing their part in helping Tower Hamlets get through this time together. And thank you to those who have already shared their stories on social media.