Across London, micro communities are galvanising in the fight against coronavirus. Even though front doors are shut, residents and local businesses are finding new ways of supporting their neighbourhoods, with WhatsApp groups being set up street by street and “angel” volunteers delivering supplies, reports.

But there is another epidemic to tackle; loneliness is a modern urban disease expected to spread during the lockdown. A student in Islington, Jessica Kleczka, is one of thousands posting leaflets through doors to make contact. “The physical and psychological effects of this are significant and we will become increasingly reliant on our communities for support,” says Jessica, part of the Mutual Aid leaflet drop on Islington’s Bemerton Estate.

Housing Association Peabody is reaching out to its residents. “We have 110,000 people in our homes with 7,000 aged over 70 and a high proportion considered vulnerable,” explains spokesperson Benjamin Blades. “Our staff have become a network of angels, phoning residents to keep them company and delivering supplies. It’s all hands to the pumps.”


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