When the coronavirus pandemic hit the UK and the country went into lockdown, it was difficult to foresee what the lasting effects would be on older people. On the Isle of Wight, as restrictions were lifted, older residents faced the daunting prospect of leaving their homes for the first time in months and under new restrictions.
Out and About Cards
On the Isle of Wight, as restrictions were lifted, older residents faced the daunting prospect of leaving their homes for the first time in months and under new restrictions. Concerns began to be raised about how older residents would approach going out after the long period of shielding and how social distancing measures would be interpreted.
Being unable to read the COVID signage if sight was an issue, coupled with growing anxiety over changes to the outdoor environment led to the idea of creating a visible card, that could be worn as a badge, which would let other people know that the card wearer was having difficulties with the new social distancing measures.
- Those who find social distancing challenging, so they may have a visual impairment or have difficulty in understanding social distancing instructions
- Are exempt from wearing a face covering under the government guidance
- Find the use of face coverings by other people challenging as they make communication difficult for those who rely on lip reading and facial expressions
The Out and About Cards display the following messages:
- Please be patient Social distancing is challenging for me
- Please be patient I am exempt from wearing a face covering
- Please be patient Your use of face coverings is challenging for me
- Please be patient I need time and space
The Out & About Cards were produced and are distributed by Age Friendly Island partner organisations and businesses. They can also be downloaded from the Isle of Wight Council’s website and printed off at home. In future, they will also be available at libraries across the Island.
If you or someone you know would benefit from using these cards, or you wish to find out more, please contact Age UK Isle of Wight on (01983) 525282.