A set of 7 cards with hand-drawn illustrations on them. The largest in the centre has a drawing of a pair of binoculars
Navigating with Kindness by Lydia Bevan

Navigating with Kindness series – a response from Newington’s Chill Club

Group 931
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16 June 2020

For the penultimate piece in our Navigating with Kindness COVID-19 response series we asked the young people from Newington’s Chill Club to reflect on life during lockdown and what it means to them moving forward.

Chill Club is a weekly youth club for children and young people aged 10-18 years at the Newington Community Centre (Ramsgate), run in partnership with Newington Big Local. It is led by visual artist Nova Marshall and a group of highly skilled and dedicated volunteers.

We asked the members from Chill Club to respond to the prompt card “Seek new perspectives” (pictured below).

Our Creative Programmes Coordinator, Becky, provided prompts to help the young people consider how lockdown had impacted their lives, and how their perspectives have changed following COVID-19. They responded with words and short phrases which they held up on a group video call, and collectively wrote a poem about their experiences of a life in lockdown…

Prompt 1- When I take part in Chill Club online I feel…

Prompt 2- Since the pandemic I have learnt…

Prompt 3- I now know that people are…

Prompt 4- I hope our poem helps people to…

Lockdown Poem– Newington Chill Club

(abridged version)


Part 1

I sit at home and I wait and I wait, I wait in hope

I wait for it all to end

I wait with you and without you

I sit at home and I wait for my endless boredom to end and for my homework to be finished

I wait for my mum to cook me dinner, while I am on my phone

I sit at home and wait and the food piles on my plate.

I’m wondering about how all the people out there are coping

I sit at home and I wait for my dog, for my coursework to end

I sit at home and I wait for the day I can go on the trampoline, and feed the neighbour’s cat, and I wait and wait

I sit at home and I wait for it all to end


Part 2

I hear stay home, save the NHS, stop this virus

only go out if absolutely necessary, you can leave for essentials, like shopping

That this is our new normal, that nothing will be the same. I want some of the same

I hear the sad news of people dying of this virus

I hear warnings of this global disaster. People being fearful of this virus, fearful of others, fearful of life

I hear people getting better, leaving hospital, showing real acts of kindness

That we can beat this virus by the end of May

I hear this lockdown could last a year!

I hear nothing. I haven’t really heard anything.

I hear people clapping, the positives, we are going to come out to re-evaluate our community


Part 3

When this is over I will go out places with my friends and have an absolutely wonderful time, I will go back to school, I will find a way to make everyone feel welcome when they come back to school,  meet my friends and have fun. I will go out and see my friends and my nan,

Have sleepovers with my friends and spend time with my family. Go to McDonalds and have tea and cakes with my friends.

When this is over I will party with my friends, go out and see my friends and family and dance, dance, dance…


When this is over, I will stop and think, enjoy this place I am in, when this is all over, I will respect this world I enjoy.


Part 4

To keep everyone safe I am kind happy and funny!

I am never leaving the house unless I have to, keep washing hands

To keep everyone safe I am helping others by going out to buy them food, making sure they have something nice to eat, not seeing my family and friends, trying to be kind to others even when they get on my nerves and encroach in my personal space…

I am staying at home till it’s over, staying at home, at home, at home, at home…

I am only going out for essentials and staying busy while I am at home, I bounce on the trampoline to do exercise, play board games to be sociable with my family

to keep everyone safe I am staying at home, staying in, staying at home, staying away, always alone



In this new world,

In this new world no Sunday shop

In this new world everything is different, and strange

It won’t be like before Quarantine. Is my life now

this new normal? I do not want – I do not want the masks, I do not want the 2 metres. I want hugs and crowds that jostle and bustle and bright smiles and hellos

In this new world that is full of invisible dangers

in this new world, I want to be free to do what I want when I want, see and hug my friends, be silly and laugh, dance and listen to music…

In this new world I will, we will, have a fresh start maybe new years in school, maybe new friends, even a better environment.

In this new world, I want happiness and a better place to live


In this new world I like to dream. Dream about what life is going to be like after lockdown. Dreaming where I am going to go with my friends and family. Dreaming about doing pantomimes, shows and festivals with my dancing crew. Dreaming about when I can be free.

I don’t know my place, I don’t know my future, I don’t know what will happen.

In this new world many people are dying. This world is a catastrophe full of dangers. We will begin to see what we took for granted


My thoughts are running crazy as to what will happen next. This world will never be the same this is the new normal. Life’s a bore



I know that other people ….

I know that other people are kind

I know that other people, people and people wish that this pandemic would be over, And that everyone would be safe,

Are getting frustrated, are getting too close, are getting fed up, are getting anxious


I know that people are fighting hard in this pandemic

I know that other people are not following the rules; but I know even more people who are being selfless, kind and compassionate by helping and supporting others.

Are struggling to cope in this messed up world.

I know that people are kind and helpful


I know that people are kind and helpful

I know that people are kind and helpful

Commissioned by

Funded by

Arts Council England
Paul Hamlyn Foundation