A Year in Our Lives was initiated by Centre for Mental Health in June 2020. We wanted to share how the dramatic impact of Covid-19 and resulting lockdowns was affecting people’s mental health, in their own words.
Contributors were invited to submit a written piece in response to one question:
How has the pandemic affected your mental health?
Over 9 months, the Centre collected and published over 80 first-hand accounts of living through the pandemic. To honour these stories, we’ve compiled the collection into an anthology, bringing together these diverse accounts, told by people of different ages, locations and backgrounds. They share widely different perspectives; from the loss and isolation of lockdowns, to the few who found solace in a quieter, less pressurised world. These pieces are yet another reminder of the ways inequality has shaped our individual experiences of the pandemic. And together, they share a collective narrative history of the pandemic, from people whose voices are rarely heard.
As the Public Inquiry into Covid-19 draws closer, A Year in Our Lives and Reaching Inland provide a vital foundation for understanding the mental health impacts of Covid-19 from people who have been through it themselves.
We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to every contributor whose account is shared in this collection. Your words have made this project what it is. Thank you for trusting us with your stories, your losses, your unexpected joys and your lives.
To explore the pieces and the collection’s themes in more detail, check out Reaching Inland, a reflective piece written by poet and activist David Gilbert.