31 Mar 2020

'Clap for our champions' group takes off

2:17 pm on 31 March 2020

Since last week Christchurch woman Belinda Clark has been clapping at the end of her drive for one minute at 7pm every night to show her appreciation to essential workers.

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Photo: 123RF

For many essential workers Covid-19 could be one of the biggest battles of their professional lives and videos are emerging around the world of people showing their appreciation by clapping on their driveways and balconies to thank them.

Clark shared the idea on social media group and it is now catching on in New Zealand.

After creating a Facebook group called Clap for our Champions at 7pm, in a matter of days the group now has more than 45,000 members.

Now thousands of people, from Auckland apartment dwellers to rural communities in the south, are clapping to show they care.

"It's a team effort...it's the people that got behind this... that's what is really making the difference," she said.

Jasmine Soa posted a video of her three-year-old boy clapping at Starship hospital. She said hospital staff would be exhausted and they deserved to know they were appreciated.

Aaron Fisher lives in Rotorua and is making this a part of his family's new normal.

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"It gives us a moment to stop doing what we are doing and it's thinking of others. That's the biggest thing. You are in your own bubble but we are not the only people going through it...these people are going above and beyond."

He said his young sons were learning to be thankful through this and it was also cultivating community spirit with his neighbours.

Clark encouraged others to join the movement, with the hope it might become a nation-wide show of solidarity.

"We can all be compassionate we can all be kind. This is the time to do it. Get out there and make a difference in your community," she said.