COVID-19 has affected everyone in a multitude of different ways. For most, the social isolation experienced due to the restrictions has been very difficult. Not being able to spend time with friends, family, and co-workers have been especially hard for the people we support. This has not gone unnoticed and with many missing the activities they took part in during the day, many staff has taken it upon themselves to come up with some very creative ways to fill that gap!
This page is intended to honor and celebrate the creativity and resourcefulness of the dedicated staff who are working every day to make each day meaningful during these very difficult times. This repository of big ideas is just the beginning – we encourage you to deposit your own big ideas (no idea is too big or too small) for others to enjoy, regardless of if you are a staff, individual, or family member! When you feel like you have exhausted your own creative juices, be inspired by others who have come up with activities to keep spirits up, stay engaged, and who have found ways to maintain relationships with the people in their lives. Again – if you have an idea to do the same, please use the “submit” button to add your idea to the repository.
Arts and Crafts
Making Bracelets and necklaces
Resource: Dollar store
Cost: Under $10 to get started
Basic knitting stitches – start with easy projects. Purchase bulky yard to for beginners, large needles
Resource: 10 Beginner Knitting Projects
Cost: Initial set up under $20/pers then ranges from approx. $10-$30 depending on the complexity of the project
Making various bracelets and necklaces
Cost: $10-$30/per person
St. Patrick’s Day posters made using material from activity boxes (Head office)
Resources: Activity boxes
Painting and Colouring
Engaging in various craft activities–water colouring, Seasonally themed
Resources: Pinterest / online/ led by staff
Cost: Varies depending on the scope of your craft $10-$40
Artists create their masterpieces and then put on a Virtual Art Show for family and friends followed by Artist recognition.
Resources: Activity boxes/ Passport funding.
Cost: Paint supplies & canvases
Paint by numbers $20-$40/per painting
Cooking and Baking
Cooking & Baking
Easy to follow recipes for baking (and others)
Resources: YouTube recipes Tasty
Cooking together by country
Individuals and staff seek extra treats (sprinkles, green Jello, candy embellishments) and add these to the baked goods
Resources: Seasonal Packages found in-store (No Frills or Metro), spruced up with extras
Cost: $5-$15 total
Daily walks & stretches in the hallways of apartment buildings
Resources: Staff support, stretches
Walking local trails
Walks along the beach! In local community and using nature as focus. Time limited
Resources: City of Toronto Trail Guide
Gardening & Balcony gardening
- Planting from seeds
- Planting from seedlings purchased from local grocery stores
- Growing vegetables in containers & herbs in small pots
- Creating flowering beds with annuals, perennials, or a mix of both!
Resources: Activity boxes gifts, Balcony Gardening
Cost: Depending on the scope of your project, plan on $50-$300
Music and Drama
Chants and Rhymes
Childhood rhymes, I would start a well-known childhood rhyme and the individuals would say it with me, it was amazing to hear some that never spoke remember the words to them from their childhood.
Resources: Can use YouTube or the internet for words and tunes. Staff to lead.
Sing along and dancing
Resources: Karaoke machine
Cost: Approx. $120-$200 +tax initial investment
Sing along, dancing, playing instruments
Resources: iPods/CD’s, YouTube videos, staff share their talents
Long & McQuade Ukulele
YouTube Ukulele Lesson
Cost: Ukulele $60+tax
YouTube video lessons- FREE!
Works great in apartment building settings where people can sit on their balconies with standard bingo cards/chips and see the “caller” who is facing the balconies on the ground using a microphone.
Resources: Staff/Volunteers, Standard Bingo cards/dabbers, speaker system
Cost: Initial cost of microphone/amp $130+tax
Bingo Cards and dabbers approx. $5/person
Online bingo game with others
Resources: Microsoft Teams/Zoom/Google Meet
Cost: Document Camera approx. $100-$200
Cost of bingo cards and dabbers $5-10/per person
Card games from novice to experienced.
Resources: Card games for 2
Cost: Under $5 for a deck of cards
Online Card Games
Online card games with others
Weekly games of cards, and board games
Cost: Approx. $20 each
Guess the TV Show
I played old tv theme songs from the 70, 80 and 90 from popular tv shows and everyone has to guess the show, I did it through YouTube they play the theme song for 30 seconds and you have to get it, again it is pulling from their memory.
Resources: Lawn Bowling, Lawn Darts, Horsehoes, Bocce Ball
Cost: $30-$75 each
Great sensory fun on a warm day
Fun with water
Cool off under the sprinklers
Washing the vans
Resources: Sprinkler, hose
Cost: cost of sprinkler
Connecting with Others
FaceTime with friends/family
Connecting with family and friends
Posing for pictures and role-playing videos to send them to their families to keep them connected.
Supplies from Drug Store & play spa/relaxing music
Resources: Staff led
Cost: Individual cost – up to $10 for supplies
Movie themes such as oldies and B&W. Popcorn Movie Night
Cost: Netflix subscription and popcorn!