Finding A Rainbow during lockdown in South Africa
Author: Christel House South Africa
The COVID-19 lockdown has brought uncertain and overwhelming feelings for many. In order to ensure that our students’ mental and emotional health are cared for, our counsellors and social workers have continued to counsel students and families.
“The mental health of many of our parents and learners has undoubtedly been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Being in lockdown can lead to increased levels of fear, anxiety, and frustration. The financial stressors, ensuring that your child is on track with their academics and being confined to a small space with a number of people can take a toll on one’s mental health,” says our Junior School Social Worker, Jessica Kannemeyer.
Our Social Services department has been encouraging students and their families to shift their mindset to a more positive one by engaging in fun-filled family activities. One of these activities, titled Finding A Rainbow, seeks to bring about hope and positivity through our students drawing or painting rainbows and then answering a few questions to spark conversation. Students answered questions like, “Give an emotion/feeling word for each of the colours of the rainbow?”
“The aim of the conversation was to encourage learners to speak openly about their emotions and to have parents display active listening while their children shared their stories,” says our CHSA Registered Counselor, Danielle Matthews.
The activity also included a scavenger hunt, whereby each family member had to find an item or object in their home, that matched each colour of the rainbow. This helped to get families moving physically, but also created some quality bonding time in the home, which is essential in helping students to cope with the stresses of lockdown.