Staying connected

Being in lockdown means that you might not be seeing your friends and family as often as you usually would. Lots of us are feeling really lonely at the moment and that’s quite normal, but there are ways to feel connected to other people and not quite so alone:

House Party – This app lets you meet up with friends using video. It’s a great app to use if you want to have a chat but also lets you play games together

Zoom – This is another video calling app that you can use to meet up with groups of friends. Unfortunately calls do have a time limit, but you can just log back in to start up your chats again.

WhatApp – You can use WhatsApp to video your contact. This is good for chats with just one or two friends.

You can make video calls more than just a chat. Here are some ideas:

  • Host a quiz – you can either allocate a quiz master or get everyone in the chat to think of 5 different questions to ask.
  • Play Bingo – You don’t even need a bingo card to play virtual bingo. All you need is your phone number. Drop the 0 from the start of your mobile number then split the remaining numbers into two digit numbers (for example 07787 273741 becomes 77, 87, 27, 37, 41). If you end up with two numbers that are the same, just increase one of the numbers by one (eg. If you have 04 and 04, this becomes 04, 05). Write these numbers on a piece of paper. Choose someone to be the bingo caller who can use Google to find a number generator (set this to call numbers between 1 and 99), and off you go!
  • Host a virtual dinner party – Get everyone to buy the same ingredients and then video call as you are all cooking. You can cook and then eat the same meal together at the same time.
  • Fancy dress party – Someone could set a theme and you can use items and clothes in your house to make an outfit. The sillier the better!
  • Play Charades / Pictionary – Each take turns to either act out or draw something whilst everyone else guesses what it is.

Did you know that you can also ask your PA to video call you if this is something that you would like. 

Join the SCLU Quiz night:

The Sheffield Care Leavers’ Union are hosting fortnightly Zoom meet ups where we do fun things like quizzes and bingo. You need to have Zoom to access these meetings but if you want more info contact Tanya on 07787 273741.

Hang out at the movies:

The care leaver group EPIC from Ireland host weekly movie nights where as a group you all log on a watch the same film. You need a Netflix account and a laptop to get involved. Find out more through their Twitter Page

Find a pen pal:

Why not ditch the internet for a while and connect with people around the world by writing a good old fashioned letter. You could see how the lockdown is playing out in other countries or ignore coronavirus entirely and chat about the weather. To find a penpal click here

Play online games together:

There are loads of free games that you can download from the Play Store or Apple Store that allows you to play against your friends. Here are some of our favourites: 

  • Scrabble 
  • Fortnight
  • Mario Kart Tour - After downloading the app, you’ll need to create a Nintendo account and play a few games on your own. Once you clear the first level, the “Friends” icon will appear when you tap the menu button at the bottom of the home screen. After selecting the “add friend” option you’ll be able to enter your friend’s Player ID or Nintendo Account into the empty field and challenge them to a match.
  • Kahoot! - This lets you set up your own quizzes with multiple choice or true or false answers which you can share with friends. 
  • Uno