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Sunday, December 4, 2022
COVID-19: Nightly for past 11 weeks, neighbours sing praises of front-line workers

A group of neighbours in The Village are finding a way to connect through cheering for health care workers.

And they’ve been doing it every night at 7:30 since March 19.

Patricia Yocom, who lives in The Village, said it started when her retired nurse friend forwarded an email from Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario.

“It simply asked for pots to be banged at 7:30 each night in support of health care workers,” she said.

“I sent an email to a few neighbours and we started that night, many of us not missing a night since.”

At first they were participating from their porches, banging pots and pans, but eventually things progressed to social distancing in the park at the end of Garrison Village Drive, in front of their homes.  

Now the group has evolved into a small jam band, covering songs like “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” and “We Are The Champions.”

“We clap, make noise, play musical instruments and sometimes dance, all in support of our health care workers,” Yocom said.

“The experience has been great for morale, meeting new friends and sharing distanced visits for a few minutes before we return to our homes.”

While the group started out playing for health care workers, the initiative evolved to support all front-line workers, plus “many other events and milestones related to COVID-19 that affect us directly and indirectly in our daily lives.”

They've been making noise to recognize:

* NOTL natives Chelsea Widdicombe and Scott Robinson trying to get home from Peru, and a welcome home night when they finally returned.

* Individual health care workers, like Sarah, a nurse at Mount Sinai in Toronto. She is the daughter of one of Yocom's neighbours.

* The victims of the shooting in Nova Scotia;

* The Snowbird crash in B.C. 

* Mother’s Day.

* When anyone in the neighbourhood celebrates a birthday. “We even had a pet turn 11,” Yocom said

“There was one evening a few weeks ago where the town asked residents to go out in support of health care workers, so we altered our time and joined in.”