Mental Health Support and Connection Ideas During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As we approach week two of social distancing and now sheltering in place, it is vital that we stay vigilant in our safety measures and protect our mental health during this uncertain time. Please take a moment to watch this video message recorded on Thursday, 3/26/20 at Town Hall.

David Bindelglass, First Selectman of the Town of Easton, delivers his first video message at Town Hall on 3/26/20 to address COVID-19 updates, mental health support, and resources available to the community.

I want to provide our town with programs and resources so you can stay connected and focused on the things that you and your children can control during this difficult time.

Ideas to Help Us Stay Grounded, Focused and Happy

I so enjoyed walking around Easton this weekend and seeing the chalk art and written messages along driveways in our neighborhood. It was heartwarming to see during this uncertain and stressful time for many in our community. It reminded me that we could all use some healthy distractions and creative activities that will help us to feel grounded, and allow us to find joy in the simple things. 

With that in mind, I am encouraging the community to take part in two activities…

  1. Easton Rocks — Residents can paint, decorate, or write on rocks found in their yards or while walking around their neighborhood streets. Based on a well-known K-5 initiative called “The Kindness Rocks Project,” residents can leave encouraging messages on rocks that may change someone’s entire day, outlook, or life. You can begin decorating rocks if you’d like, and then as a community let’s leave the rocks for friends and neighbors to find between April 1 and 12. You can place the rocks near the base of a mailbox or at the end of a driveway, so we can practice safe distancing guidelines. I’m encouraging residents to leave the rocks alone for a few days, once they have been left as a gift or surprise on your property. I hope this will give many of you something to look forward to. Val Buckley at the Senior Center can match you up with a senior resident, so we can be sure to reach our elders or “shut-ins” and lift their spirits as well.
  2. Cowbell Challenge — This inspiration comes from Jimmy Fallon, and all of us at Town Hall are encouraging residents — young and old — to join us this Friday, March 27 at 6:30 p.m. Like many of us, Jimmy is working from home and he said “the show must go on” and he reminded viewers that “sometimes pretending to be courageous is just as good.” Let’s head outside — and from our front steps, driveways, or yards we can bang on a cowbell, play an instrument, grab those pots, pans and a spoon — and make a joyful noise with our neighbors. If area churches want to join us, we encourage you to ring those church bells too! It’s the perfect way to release our energy, emotions, and allow us to come together (from a distance) and connect in brave new ways. Wave to your neighbors from afar, and encourage your street to take part in this event so you can all enjoy it together! If anyone wants to share their “Cowbell Challenge” videos with us, you can tag me on Facebook at: @bindelglassforeaston. We’d love to see you in action!

Mental Health & Coping Resources

State Rep. Anne Hughes hosted a “Virtual Town Hall” on Tuesday, 3/14/20 that I participated in. You can watch the replay in the link above. We hope this answered some of your most recent questions about sheltering in place or the “Stay Safe, Stay Home” initiative from the state level. Here are some of the additional resources that we wanted to share with the community:

Let’s stick together, Easton.

Dave Bindelglass

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