What does lockdown 2.0 mean for meanwhile?
Here at Meanwhile Space we have been working to understand the impact of Covid-19 on our community of tenants. As well as an impact to financial security and business models, we’re conscious that coping with these challenges and the isolating effects of lockdown have a considerable impact on individual wellness. As a consequence we’ve developed a four week programme of wellbeing and tenant conversation.
Every Wednesday, an expert will lead a virtual guided meditation session – free and exclusive to Meanwhile Space tenants.
So far we have had Sonja Lockyer, a bodywork practitioner with over 15 years experience, who led a relaxing 30-minute meditation, and Josef Steiner, an established Soma breath teacher based in Ireland.
Every Thursday lunchtime, we'll be interviewing a Meanwhile Space tenant to share tips on how they have innovated and adapted their business for the "new normal", which we are hoping that other tenants can learn from.
Our first guest was Julie, founder of Jules & Gems, a sustainable jewellery boutique at our Blue House Yard project. She shared some practical advice on developing a digital presence to survive the pandemic, including various government marketing schemes she has participated in. Next was The People Speak, a collective of international arts practitioners based on Aberfeldy Street, who have had to adapt the way they run events in light of Covid-19. Our third guest is John, founder of Black Cowboy Coffee, a cafe that opened recently at our Elephant Arcade site. Lastly we spoke to Edward Quigley, an artist who has a studio and runs art markets at Blue House Yard, about the impact of this year on the art community.
We are sharing a recipe a week to inspire tenants to take enjoyment from the simple activities that can be achieved during lockdown. We are also encouraging them to share their own recipes. The Meanwhile Space community is inclusive and participatory, and everyone can offer ideas and feel supported by facing challenges together.
Why are we offering this?
Meanwhile Space projects are home to businesses across many industries including retail, creative, tech, hospitality and community/social enterprises. Covid-19 is impacting our community in various ways but, since our tenants are all freelancers and small businesses (several in the seed stage of growth), it is an uncertain and worrying time for everyone.
The role of Meanwhile Space is to support people with their creative ideas for projects and businesses. A part of that service is to nurture wellbeing and create a friendly and supportive environment to allow our tenants to flourish. In addition to this, we are also responsible for providing business development support. Through our interviews on Instagram Live, we hope to offer practical advice as well as share inspiring stories of tenants who have successfully stepped up their game to this year's challenges.
Through this programme, we also hope to remind all our tenants that they are part of a community, and are not alone with their challenges. Often, there is a sense of community among tenants of a particular project, but we encourage collaboration, knowledge- and skill-sharing across all of our active projects.
In 2020, more than ever, it is important to have affordable neighbourhood workspaces to get people through the pandemic and provide opportunity for the new talent and innovation that will lead us out of it. This lockdown resource programme is part of a wider company response by Meanwhile Space, to support our resourceful and passionate community.
Please note: the guided meditation sessions are exclusive to our tenants, but the Instagram Live interviews are open to the public. Follow our Instagram to join in the conversation.