A teacher is reaching out to her neighbourhood in support of those struggling with social isolation during the Coronavirus shutdown.

Cristin Casey, director of performing arts at the BMAT group of primary and secondary schools in Harlow, Epping, Stansted and Newham.

Now, with schools closed to most and teachers spending time working from home, she is finding herself in isolation at home while her husband works in school.

As a resident of Newhall in Harlow, she is a member of the Newhall Social Club, set up to host events in the community.

With all events cancelled, Mrs Casey and the club members are coming together to offer support to those around them who are socially isolated.

Mrs Casey, whose focus in the group was events for youth engagement, said: “Social distancing is very uncomfortable for people who are used to being busy and engaging with people on a daily basis.

“In my job, I never have a free moment; from when I get to school to when I leave, someone needs me at all times.

“There is a sense of vulnerability and insecurity, so I am finding ways I can help people in a similar position. I have a partner who is out working, but I can speak with him every day; I worry about those who do not have people to lean on at this time.

“We are spreading the word to our community that we are here to help however we can; if people need shopping collecting, someone to talk to on the phone or a face to face conversation over FaceTime.”

As a teacher, Mrs Casey is looking to supply resources to parents and children in the community to help them to keep occupied and challenged.

She added: “If I am that resource right now, needed for picking up essentials or having a chat with someone, that is what I will share. It is bringing a sense of wellbeing to someone else, but also bringing satisfaction and wellbeing to myself at the same time.

“Everyone is feeling isolated and vulnerable and so I just want to reach out. We are a social club and so need to keep being sociable, at this time more than ever.”