In an accelerated digital age, consumers are given the freedom and tools to share their opinions  widely and easily. Add on the global agendas to combat climate change, challenging social and political issues, plus a pandemic — we can agree that we’re riding a huge wave of change. As communicators, it’s never been more important to be deeply entrenched in our clients’ brands and extend our positions from being the connector between the media and our clients, to being fierce brand guardians with strong commercial acumen. 

Market prediction and being industry experts are crucial for public relations practitioners to become proactive drivers of change. In this article, we unpack big changes that have been shaking up the industry and present the top 5 trends that PR professionals need to adapt to to  remain relevant and competitive. 

Sharp, measurable results beyond ‘PR value’ 

A decades-old point of contention in the PR industry has been how PR success is measured. Through the years, agencies have worked out various mathematical formulas to place a commercial value on earned media, often defined as ‘PR value’. But as the world becomes more sophisticated, how do smaller businesses — who may not necessarily invest in proprietary technology — measure consumer sentiment and outcome? This is where, we believe, developing tailored deliverables that are tied to commercial success is key. Whether a  campaign drives an increase in room nights over the same period, or driving page visits from a specific piece of content, PR teams need to put on their mettle and demonstrate the power of great storytelling.

Well-researched, socially-aware campaigns

In this era, consumers are not simply demanding quality products but are actively sourcing purchases that align with their personal values and commitments. With more people putting conscious consumption into practice, highlighting your clients’ ethos and commitment to social responsibility will play a big role in reaching your target audience. As consumers are constantly being exposed to advertisements and products pitching for their attention, providing meaningful creative content will ensure better reception. Finding platforms and social media channels that will give brand leaders an opportunity to voice their views can allow consumers to connect with the brand on a greater level by understanding the heart and mind behind it.

Selecting relevant and socially responsible KOLs

How long has it been since a Kardashian-endorsed product generated sky high sales? Besides, a celebrity level budget being out of reach for many brands, finding KOLs that demonstrate authenticity is becoming a rarity. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as when brands do manage to find the right one(s) to collaborate with, it could go a long way in generating brand love. PR agencies should be aware of potential KOLs on multiple levels – micro, macro, and nano – as well as what this means in multiple markets and social media platforms, as well as the average engagement levels  of influencers. Be an avid user of social media, so that you can keep an eye out for upcoming talent which could allow you to foster important relationships early on. 

Rethinking events and consumer activations

In most countries, the road to opening up after the pandemic has been slow which means the possibility of holding large scale consumer activations or events in the near future are slim. While this has definitely thrown a cog into the usual running of public relations, it has also been an opportunity for agencies to get creative and even increase their reach and effectiveness in these unprecedented times. Because of this, online and hybrid activities have become more commonplace. And while we’re all eager to see life go back to normal, it is entirely possible that many of these new changes are here to stay even after the pandemic. Therefore, PR agencies should not view this time as a temporary waiting period before returning to traditional consumer activations and events is possible. Rather, effectively experimenting with new strategies and identifying which ones will remain relevant post-COVID will set PR agencies on track to adapt to the long term changes we will see in consumers and their behaviours.

Debunking the traditional definition of PR and deep diving into digital

In an age of algorithms and data-driven marketing, a key question to ask is where PR fits in the consumer journey given these new adaptations. Consistently serving to help clients build relationships and highlight noteworthy aspects of their brand, we believe the PR role remains of high value and acts as the strongest brand guardian in a time of constant change. As PR agencies and in-house teams work more cross-functionally than ever, it provides an opportunity to connect multiple marketing functions to drive better search, earned, and shared results and build a great reputation. In fact, a data-saturated world benefits PR teams tremendously if they are able to capitalise upon it by generating relevant and meaningful content which will translate to better content that drives conversion. 

The beauty industry is known to be a trillion dollar industry, with Clean Beauty trending in skincare across the world.  The rise of the sustainability movement has never been more prevalent to look after Mother Earth, along with the desire to lead a cleaner lifestyle — including diet— free from toxins, nasties and anything overly processed. But what about our skin? Although there is currently no regulated definition, clean beauty products are designed with a sustainable approach to the health of the environment, planet and our skin. This includes products with non-toxic formulas, plant-based ingredients, cruelty-free certification, biodegradable or recyclable packaging, and transparent labelling. Social impact company abillion published a report on the rise and demand for clean beauty products, with countries like Mexico and the UK showing potential as “emerging vegan beauty markets”.

Evidence of the widespread clean beauty trend can be seen in the rise in demand for vegan and cruelty-free beauty products by consumers alike. Body and skincare products currently dominate the clean beauty market, comprising more than half of all beauty reviews. The abillion report spotlights consumer attitudes towards sustainable beauty and promising markets for skincare, cosmetics, hair and fragrance products. An increase in demand for sustainable beauty options was observed across product types, with body and skincare dominating the market, comprising more than half of all beauty reviews and experiencing 8.5 times growth during 2020. Similar growth rates were also reported for hair and fragrance products.

Indie beauty retailers like Tatcha, Drunk Elephant and Indie Lee were the first few brands in the market that developed a loyal following but individually could not make a dent in the overall cosmetics market. Once consumers became aware of the importance of clean beauty, the demand for conscious beauty began to grow. Eager to snatch a share of this increasingly lucrative market, big-name players followed suit. Within the past two years, Sephora created icons to distinguish their “clean” products. Shiseido announced it would acquire Drunk Elephant for $845 million, and Unilever, which now owns Ren, said it would buy Tatcha for a reported $500 million.

Flexitarians have the highest level of engagement with beauty products, followed by vegetarians and omnivores. According to the report, plant-based members have the lowest concentration within the clean beauty segment but have the highest engagement with food-based products. This shows the higher likelihood of flexitarians pursuing a more holistic sustainable consumption module outside the food space than individuals who identify as plant-based or vegan.

The report outlined a sharp growth in consumer interest for sustainable beauty products. Driven by the awareness of cruelty-free, environmental and health concerns, demand for skincare, cosmetics, hair and fragrance products has grown significantly in the past year. With sustainable and conscious living becoming an increasingly important social issue across all industries, the clean beauty industry is here to stay and help consumers transition to a more eco-friendly and self-aware lifestyle.

This year V&V is partnering with Talking Philanthropy 2021 ahead of their upcoming philanthropic thought-leadership virtual forum, which is taking place on the 14th of May. Organised by the international fundraising and philanthropy advisory firm, Global Philanthropic, the forum will bring together some of the world’s leading organisations and academic institutions.

This year the conference will focus on the theme of Asia-Pacific: Supporting a Philanthropic Ecosystem. The forum aims to bring leaders from around the world and the region to spotlight the structural issues surrounding philanthropy in APAC and provide a macro perspective on the key issues that need addressing in order for philanthropy within the region to flourish.

The multi-regional event will be co-hosted by the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, the National University of Singapore, and the Centre for Strategic Philanthropy, University of Cambridge Judge Business School. Noteworthy partners of the forum include The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, United Nations Foundation, and the conservation charity; BirdLife International. 

Throughout the day, there will be a series of panel discussions, research presentations, and case studies, discussing each of the following sub-themes in the context of Asia-Pacific philanthropy:

According to Ben Morton Wright, Group CEO and Founder of Global Philanthropic, “Philanthropy in Asia is at a critical tipping point. Governments of emerging markets in the Asia-Pacific are crucial to unlocking the philanthropic potential in the region, making them the target focus for world leaders in philanthropy. Talking Philanthropy 2021 will be a game-changer to help us all address the world’s greatest inequalities during these challenging times.”

Talking Philanthropy aims to inspire attendees and speakers to begin conversations with governments and philanthropic practitioners to revisit regulation and ensure a conducive environment for philanthropy and identify areas for further research. The complimentary event is free for all to attend and one can register for the forum through the following link – https://asiapac.globalphilanthropic.com/talking-philanthropy/

As #EarthDay2021 rolls around this week, sustainability is at the forefront of everybody’s minds. Yet, it’s not enough for companies to talk about sustainability just one day out of the entire year, which is why we’ve rounded up a list of top brands that walk the talk year-round. With sustainability at the core of their brand values and offerings, you can rest assured that every penny you spend with them will be guilt-free.

Singita

Every aspect of Singita’s day-to-day operations is centred around its 100-year purpose to preserve and protect large areas of African wilderness for future generations. They’ve highlighted clear sustainability targets for 2025, including using renewable technologies with the goal to become carbon neutral, water saving measures and waste management.

One of their most notable projects is the drive of clean solar energy in the Kruger National Park. 78% of the power required to run Singita Kruger National Park was provided by solar energy, resulting in a remarkable reduction in carbon emissions. In addition, Singita’s ongoing conservation efforts are undertaken alongside its non-profit partner funds and trusts where progress is evident through the transformation of the areas under Singita’s care. This includes the recent birth of the first black rhino calf in Tanzania in decades at Singita Grumeti.

Inge Kotze, Singita’s General Manager of Conservation, strives to form strategic partnerships in conservation and supports projects that promote the preservation of Africa’s biodiversity. She also oversees an all-woman Conservation team who are responsible for Singita’s Biodiversity and Sustainability initiatives, as well as its Community Partnership Programmes.

TiNDLE 

TiNDLE is founded on the belief that doing one’s part for the planet should be easy, enjoyable, and most importantly delicious. Comprising only 9 ingredients, TiNDLE Thy uses 74% less land, 82% less water and produces 88% less greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional chicken. Currently available across a range of cuisines at 11 different restaurants in Singapore, eating green has never been more delicious.

This April, TiNDLE has partnered with homegrown heroes, ecoSPIRITS and Brass Lion Distillery, to bring a sustainable edition of 28 HongKong Street’s Proper Dinner series. The limited time menu will feature Chef Melvyn Tan’s TiNDLE spin on the bar’s iconic Fried Chicken n’ Waffles topped with homemade herb butter. With every component of the dish made from scratch by Chef Mel himself, this version may just be the most sustainable and freshest take on the nostalgic American bar food in Singapore. Complete your meal with a Brass Ring Cocktail, a low-waste, gin-based cocktail by Chris Saw, Singapore’s reigning Sustainable Bartending Competition winner.

VIVANT

The world’s first live streaming wine experience platform, VIVANT is redefining how consumers learn about wine and supporting a more sustainable future for the industry, featuring the world’s best tasting wines from responsible winemakers practicing sustainable, organic, and biodynamic viticulture. VIVANT only works with responsible winemakers who take care of their little piece of the planet and pledge to keep it free of synthetic pesticides, herbicides and fungicides in order to produce better quality wine and improve the environment for future generations.

Patina

Opening in Q2 this year, Patina Maldives, Fari Islands, will advance the establish trend of purposeful travel; from zero-waste kitchens and recycling marine plastic, to offering free dive lessons to local children to nurture next-generation respect for the environment, this resort is driven by its commitment to perpetuality. 

At the 100% solar-powered kids’ club – Footprints – kids will have the opportunity to turn recycled ocean plastic into models using 3D printing and sign up for free diving lessons to nurture next-generation awareness of the local ocean environment. The resort will also be offering free PADI dive certifications for local Maldivian children.

Ambitious in its plans to tackle marine plastic pollution, Patina Maldives will be implementing a comprehensive coral propagation project, as well as leading regular team and guest clean-ups – with 10kg of marine plastic collected for every stay.

March is one of our favourite months, with a special day dedicated to women and women only. This International Women’s Day, we’d like to give a special shout-out to women who are leaders in their field, inspirational icons for young girls everywhere and living, breathing evidence that there is nothing women can’t achieve.  

Piya Thamchariyawat, Creative director of EDG Design

The design world is a male-dominated one, but women designers are making waves of their own and gaining due recognition. Principal and Senior Creative Director at EDG Design, Piya Thamchariyawat is an award-winning designer with an astounding portfolio of concepts and projects around the world. Building on twenty years of experience with EDG, Piya directs design for the firm’s Middle East, Asia and Australasia projects and leads the firm’s global conceptual projects.

Piyanuch pairs innovation with style, operational savvy with design impact to create signature guest experiences. She has a keen understanding of how to take a project from her mind’s eye, to a sketch, to a drawing set and through to opening. Thanks to her strong understanding of the importance of the human experience, the savvy designer has a knack for developing deep-rooted conceptual DNA for each project she works on, ensuring strong, interesting stories are reflected through her expert design.

Alicia Pan, Girlboss and Co-founder of Yoga Movement

Co-founder of Yoga Movement (YM), a yoga teacher with over 500 hours of training under her belt, and a former singer-songwriter, Alicia has carved a multifaceted career and legacy for herself. A go-getting boss lady who can definitely kickass (figuratively AND literally – she’s into Muay Thai and boxing, and dabbles in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu), Alicia’s success is no accident, even if it wasn’t the path she envisioned initially.

When YM opened its doors in 2012, Alicia had small aspirations: to deliver yoga to the people in a small-scale boutique studio. Demand boomed, and quickly exceeded their first studio’s capacity. One thing lead to another and before long, Yoga Movement has grown into an iconic fitness-lifestyle brand with over 100,000 yoga enthusiasts clocking a whopping 25,000 visits a month, and six studio concepts under their belt to date — including their brand new Orchard Flagship Studio.

VIVANT’s Women in Wine Live Experience

To celebrate the occasion this year, VIVANT will be directing the spotlight onto women winemakers who are brewing up their own success in the field. The “Women in Wine” Live Experience invites all wine enthusiasts to hear from female wine leaders, who will be sharing their inspiring journeys that has brought them to where they are today, as well as highlight the multifarious opportunities offered by the wine industry.

Meet established women winemakers from different wine horizons, like Claire Lurton, owner of Château Haut-Bages Libéral (Bordeaux), and Amélie and Cécile Buecher, owners and winemakers at Vignoble des 2 Lunes (Alsace). The experience also features an exclusive conversation with Paz Levinson, star sommelier of Anne-Sophie Pic Group.

Cherie Spriggs, Head Winemaker at Nyetimber

The first ever woman to be named ‘Sparkling Wine Maker of the Year’, Cherie Spriggs is writing new chapters in wine-making history. Her illustrious career in the art of winemaking began in 2007, where she joined the team at Nyetimber, England’s leading producer of sparkling wine. Since then, Cherie has played an instrumental role in the brand’s growth, including their recent expansion to Asia. Her feat is testament to her skills as much as it is to Nyetimber’s dedication to excellence. The team is expecting to produce two million bottles a year by 2030, up from one million today, with the entire industry producing at least 20 million bottles.

As we welcome back our national pastime of dining out with open arms, some of us are a bit more tentative than others. These days, dining in an enclosed space with strangers may seem slightly daunting at first, so to ease ourselves into it, we’ve been dining and drinking alfresco more often than not. The gorgeous weather we’re having these days doesn’t hurt either. So, enjoy your brunch with safe distancing and a side of sunshine at some of our favourite spots:

1. Wildseed at Alkaff Mansion

Cosied at the ground level of The Alkaff Mansion and surrounded by sprawling canopies, lies Wildseed café, a pet-friendly floral café and patisserie. Wildseed serves as a conduit for pet owners and families to congregate. Offering a hearty selection of brunch items, freshly baked cakes and luscious pastries, the blooming café that rests in the hill of Telok Blangah makes for a true escape from the bustling city.

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2. Open Farm Community

Open Farm Community is a farm-to-table restaurant with a garden brimming with herb and vegetable produce used in its European-fusion dishes. It boasts sweeping garden views from its terrace, or you could grab a seat on its timber-decked patio alongside your well-behaved pup. Around the grounds are play areas for restless children.

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3. The Knolls at Capella Singapore

Be swept away with majestic seaside views at this refined alfresco spot in Sentosa. Guests can expect a Mediterranean-inspired menu that sits in complementary contrast to the colonial Asian detail and classic antiques of interiors designed by Yasuhiro Koichi.

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4. The Summerhouse

Tucked away in the “idllyic Seletar countryside” is The Summerhouse — a romantic dining room with their picture perfect Garden Domes. Make it a night to remember for two with an ethereal experience under the night sky, and a delicious menu to boot.

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5. The Halia

Halia – Malay for ginger – is located in the one-hectare Ginger Garden of the Singapore Botanic Gardens where over 250 species of ginger with their stunning foliage and colourful flowers thrive. Channelling picnic vibes without the hassle, the open-air terrace lets you admire the stunning scenery of Singapore’s first and only tropical botanic garden on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List. 

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Barely a month ago, the world was rocked by the death of George Floyd – yet another Black life unfairly taken, and one that proved to be the breaking point and wakeup call not just for the USA, but the world. Globally, protests continue for racial justice and police reform; with hundreds of thousands, if not millions, standing in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement to fight systemic racism.

Education or re-education, learning and un-learning, are the first steps in understanding the individual’s place in the system. Then only can the movement be purposefully pushed forward in the hopes of creating lasting change. Here are some of the resources the team has found useful in our own journeys over the past four weeks, as we stand together to support true equality.

READ:

Layla Saad is a globally respected writer, speaker and podcast host on the topics of race, identity, leadership, personal transformation and social change. Meaningful and relevant, her book, entitled Me and White Supremacy, is a 28-day guide focusing on combatting racism by helping readers identify and dismantle white supremacy and biases within themselves.

A bold read for anyone who wants a deep dive into the truth of systemic racism in the United States is this book by Ijeoma Oluo. A New York Time Bestseller, So You Want To Talk About Race is a contemporary take on America’s racial landscape and the complexities of issues faced by African- Americans.

Written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, national correspondent for The Atlantic, Between the World and Me is a riveting analysis into racism in the United States. The book takes you through a historical journey through real events in American history as experienced by the African-American community.

WATCH:

Directed by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, 13th is a thought-provoking documentary that takes a deep long look into the history of United States’ prison system – revealing racial inequality, prejudice, and the disproportionate number of African-Americans who have been incarcerated. Available on Netflix, this powerful film tells an important story to all who will watch and listen.

Based on James Baldwin’s uncompleted manuscript, I Am Not Your Negro is a documentary explored through the notes and letters of Baldwin in the 1970s. The memoir touches on racism in the United States as well as the deaths of Baldwin’s close friends and civil rights leaders, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr. and Medgar Evans.

Based on the events of a true story, When They See Us is a web television miniseries that premiered in 2019. The series tells the story of the wrongful conviction of five African-American teenagers, Kevin Richardson, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Korey Wise and Raymond Santana, after a jogger was brutally attacked in Central Park in 1989.

LISTEN:

Hosted by journalists of colour, this podcast tackles the subject of race head-on. The fearless conversations explore how race impacts every part of society – from politics, pop culture to history, sports and everything in between.

Slay in Your Lane: The Podcast comes from multi-award-winning authors Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinené, who rose to prominence with their pioneering guide to life for young Black Women. The podcast explores topical news and popular culture from a Black British female perspective while expanding upon many of the same themes addressed in the book.

This podcast digs into stories that are not always shared out in the open. Hosts Leila Day and Hana Baba start conversations about what it means to be black and how we talk about blackness. It’s a celebration of black joy with a mission to dig deeper into stories that we don’t hear enough about.

Foreseeable is a podcast by Global-is-Asian, the flagship digital platform of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. Each episode addresses a different social or cultural issue in Singapore, with local and international experts sharing their thoughts, opinions and predictions. Tune in to their episode on racial integration in Singapore, particularly poignant in the current international climate.

Step inside the confession booth of Wesley Morris and Jenna Wortham, two culture writers for The New York Times. They devour TV, movies, art, music and the internet to find the things that move them – to tears, awe and anger. Episodes like “Being Black in the Age of Wokeness” and “Still Processing: Being Biracial” are not to be missed.

Check out the rest of our blog here for the latest updates on current affairs, travel and wellness trends.

Kindness and community have never been so important. During these unprecedented times there has been an amazing rise in incredible thoughtful kindness from individuals, brands and companies to support those in need throughout the pandemic. The impact of the Covid-19 virus has changed our outlook and the way we live our lives, shining a light on the importance of human connection and a sense of community.

Check out some of the amazing Singaporean companies, international brands and donors that are giving back during this time – from helping frontline health professionals to building lifesaving machinery and assisting less fortunate members of the community.

Singapore’s Initiatives:

International Contributors:

Famous Donors:

For more information on Covid-19 topics, please visit our blog here!

Throughout the past month, the number of Covid-19 patients in Singapore has surged. Worryingly, the vast majority of those infected have been Singapore’s migrant workers living in dormitories. To curb the spread, these accommodations have been declared as isolation areas and unsurprisingly, many have also been identified as Covid-19 clusters. 

The climbing toll aside — at publishing, Singapore has the highest number of cases in Southeast Asia — the Covid-19 outbreak has also brought migrant workers’ cramped living conditions to light globally. Many Singaporeans came to truly understand the living situation of the country’s 400,000 migrant workers for the first time, including financial insecurity and lack of access to healthcare, on top of cramped conditions. 

A silver lining is that many in the local community started to ask the same question: how can I help our unsung heroes? Studies have shown that how we choose to spend our money or time impacts our happiness and emotional well-being. Evidently, giving to those less privileged than us activates the reward area of the brain which makes us feel happy. 

A number of volunteer-run organisations as well as charities in Singapore have rallied together to assist our migrant workers with daily necessities while they’re in isolation; from monetary contributions, donation drives for meals, snacks, beverages, games, clothing, data cards and more are also ongoing in our city. We’ve highlighted some ways that you can help. We ask that you consider extending a helping hand to our migrant workers who build our roads, our buildings, and ultimately, our city — for which, we are deeply grateful. 

Donating money

  1. Migrant x Me is a social enterprise that is committed to raising awareness of the migrant worker community. Continuing to build an inclusive Singapore through fundraising efforts, donations go towards long-term education programmes, emergency funds for workers in need, future events to bridge the local and migrant communities. Throughout this pandemic, the money has also gone towards forming care packages including data top ups, vitamins and masks.
  2. Healthserve is a non-profit organisation dedicated to providing healing and hope to migrant workers. Through their medical clinics, casework, social assistance, advocacy, research and outreach programmes they work to address the complex and intertwined needs of migrant workers – from medical to legal, physical to emotional, mental to social. All donations from 10th April will be directed to HealthServe’s general fund to support their operations that helps more than 10,000 migrant workers every year. All outright cash donations for $50 or more will receive from IRAS 2.5 times the value in tax-deduction.
  1. Migrant Workers’ Centre is a non-government organisation whose mission is to champion fair employment practices and the well-being of Singapore’s migrant workers. MWC has set up a fundraising campaign where charitable donations will go towards food and accommodation costs as well as everyday essentials such as toiletries. It has also partnered with Alliance of Guest Workers Outreach to distribute care meals and packs to more than 250 dormitories. 
  1. TWC2 is a non-profit organisation that is dedicated to promoting equitable treatment for migrant workers, they strive to help workers through difficulty and throughout this pandemic they have been assisting in a number of different ways. You can donate through their giving page and the money goes towards phone top-ups so that the workers can speak to their families and friends back home. 

Volunteering

  1. Majulah Belanja has joined together with other charities to raise funds and collect goods. The charity is focusing on addressing immediate needs such as food, basic necessities, promoting meaningful occupational engagement for health & well-being and consolidating resources for an online support hub. Volunteers can assist to ensure that the needs of those in Singapore’s dormitories are met through answering requests on their website – from phone chargers, to fans and toiletries. 
  1. ItsRainingRaincoats is an initiative that aims to spread kindness to migrant workers in Singapore by improving the lives of workers through imaginative, innovative and authentic strategies. They recently launched Mad Wish, Making A Difference While I Stay Home. At this time, where migrant workers are stuck in isolation and the vast majority of the Singapore workforce works from home, the organisation launched a remote programme for learning English. As many migrant workers have expressed interest in improving their English, it is an ideal time to skill up. Conducted purely online, anyone can volunteer as long as you can speak English and can spare 45 minutes a week!

Donating goods

  1. City of Good is a vision of a Singapore where individuals, organisations and leaders come together to give their best for others. It is run by the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre. The #SGUnited portal has been put together by NVPC after consulting with charities on their needs. There is also an online form specifically for donating in-kind to migrant workers. 
  1. It’s Raining Raincoats is also pooling volunteers and resources together to match donors and migrant workers. They update their social media channels regularly as they have their ear to the ground on changing daily needs. For more information on how you can help, follow their social media channels for details on donating goods such as old phones, games, colouring pencils and more. 

Making masks

  1. #CYC300kMaskChallenge is run by heritage made-to-measure tailor CYC. If you have a sewing machine and some basic skills, we urge you to join the movement. CYC provides the template for anyone who can commit to making 300 masks in 10 days or less. While they have enough volunteers for now, those interested can still sign up to be part of their waiting list or database for future needs. 

For more inspiration to get you through this circuit breaker, check out the rest of our blog here.

Listening to podcasts are an ideal to pass the time when cooped up at home during this Covid-19 pandemic. Offering an alternative to visual entertainment, podcasts can transport listeners to another realm, educate, entertain and inform. Here are some of V&VPR top 5 favourite podcasts: 

A favourite, this podcast is hosted by DJ Lauren Laverne features notable guests who she ‘sends’ to a desert island. A story of their life, each guest gives eight tracks, a book and a luxury that they would take to their desert island. Guests include a range of incredible people from Footballer Ian Wright, to Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe and composer Lin-Manuel Miranda. The series goes back to early 1940s, and so there’s a plethora of editions to listen to. Be sure to listen to the incredible David Nott, who shares his experience as a Doctor in disaster and war zones. Sit back and enjoy as stars share the soundtrack of their lives.

A current affairs podcast that brings you up to date with the latest news and happenings each week day. The Daily’s host is celebrated journalist Michael Barbaro of The New York Times who summarises emerging news stories and discusses cultural issues with guests.

Singer song-writer Jessie Ware co-hosts this hilarious podcast about food and family with her fabulous mother, Lennie. Each week guests from the worlds of entertainment, culture and politics drop by for a bite and a chat.

A thrilling listen, Sarah Koenig and Julie Snyder have co-created this investigative journalism podcast. The anthology features three different seasons, each one focused on a different true crime story. If you haven’t listened to it yet, this is a great and binge-worthy podcast to get you through the next few weeks.

The popular New York Times column that was recently turned into an acclaimed TV series on Amazon. This podcast features notable personalities reading the popular columns about the stories and mysteries of modern love. At the end of each episode, each hosts interviews the original writers to discuss post-column life and love.

For more inspiration to get you through isolation, visit the rest of our blog here!