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Institute for Social Justice

COVID-19: Impacts and Interventions

Our research into the impact of COVID-19 in different contexts.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has not left a single part of our lives untouched.

What is certain, however, is that its impacts have been most drastically felt by the young, the elderly, the poor and those already vulnerable. We have sought to respond to the unfolding pandemic by developing research that seeks to both understand the impact of COVID-19 in different contexts and develop interventions that provide resilience and new opportunities.

Our current projects are:

Creative Doodle Book: Inclusive Community Arts during Physical Distancing

Front cover of the Creative Doodle Book

The disruption caused by COVID-19 has forced many community groups to drastically adapt or even suspend their activities. This has been particularly impactful on organisations working with marginalised and vulnerable people.

The Creative Doodle Book is a hands-on resource developed by Professor Matthew Reason in collaboration with Mind the Gap Theatre Company to support socially distanced community arts practice during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During ‘normal’ times the arts have a vital role in supporting resilience through providing opportunities for creative expression. During the COVID-19 crisis, it is even more vital to find ways for everyone to express their creativity in community contexts and the Creative Doodle Book project is providing exciting ways for this to happen.

The project has received UKRI Arts and Humanities Research Council funding under their COVID-19 urgent calls programme.

Impact of COVID-19 on the Mental Health and Learning of Young Children

2 young children sat at the table eating

This project is a partnership between York St John University, and Kids Planet Day Nurseries, an independent provider of early years care and education.

A senior manager from Kids Planet approached York St John in April 2020, wishing to research the impact of COVID-19. It was agreed that information could be collected through an online survey to all staff, and from in-depth interviews with parents and practitioners, using interpretive phenomenological analysis to analyse the data.

The overall aim was to investigate the effects of the pandemic on young children, their parents and carers and as a consequence, to plan, implement and evaluate action that would safeguard the psychological wellbeing and mental health of young children, both in the short and longer term. 

This interdisciplinary project is in its second stage, and is currently being conducted by Dr Joan Walton (education), Dr Chris Moreh (sociology), Dr Emily McGeown (psychology), Janice Darkes-Sutcliffe (PGR, education) and Gill Mason (Kids Planet Day Nurseries).

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