Neighbours get together (apart) for worker salute

Showing their appreciation . . . Clapping for essential workers while practising social distancing, standing 2m apart, are Waverley neighbours (from left) Renna Idrus, Peiter Du Plessis, Jacqui Whibley, Pauline Hockney, Jeanette Robinson-Tromop, Craig Whibley, Sophie Whibley, Eva Speizer, Cam Fraser (15), Tracey Fraser and Jim Mann. Note: All were safe distances apart, the telescopic lens used results in making everyone appear closer, as does the ocean. PHOTO: CHRISTINE O’CONNOR

A group of Waverley residents came together to show their appreciation for essential workers — through clapping.

About 20 Harbour Heights residents took part in a New Zealand-wide initiative called Clap for our Champions yesterday.

The initiative involved residents standing in their driveways, doorsteps, gardens or balconies and acknowledging essential workers working through lockdown -— including those in healthcare, supermarkets, truckers and rubbish collectors – through clapping.

Harbour Heights resident Jacqui Whibley said the street clap was organised through a WhatsApp messaging group, which had been set up for the street about a week ago, for the street to support each other through the lockdown.

“There’s 21 people in the group. Each person is representative of a house on the street.

“One of the ladies on our street thought it would be nice to have a group so we could communicate and help each other if anyone needs anything.”

A member of the group suggested the Clap for Champions event, and on Saturday night and again last night about 20 of the street’s residents had taken part.

“We had a couple and their dog, a family, someone on their own, our own family, everyone came together.”

She said the neighbours came out to the front of their properties, waved, chatted from a distance and clapped for one minute, then went back inside.

“Some people might not have gone out all day except for this.

“It’s a way to show appreciation for those people who are working really hard right now.

“We are planning to continue doing it.”

Mrs Whibley said the cul-de-sac street had come together since the lockdown.

“It’s a nice way to be part of a community.

“It does make people feel less alone at a time like this when we can’t leave our homes.”

Otago Daily Times