Man creates colour coding system for people self-isolating

Story and video from SWNS

A man has been praised for creating a colour coding system - so people self-isolating who need supplies can let others know from the safety of their own window.

Retired pharmacist Stuart Newsome, 64, asked residents on his street to display either a green or red card in their window, depending on whether they needed help.

Stuart and his wife Jane, 63, told their neighbours they would bring shopping, collect medication, or help with transport if individuals were stuck inside.

Stuart walks down his road in Ripon, North Yorks., every day to identify if any of the houses are displaying a red card.

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A pedestrian, crosses an empty road on a deserted Oxford Street in London on April 2, 2020, as life in Britain continues during the nationwide lockdown to combat the novel coronavirus pandemic. - Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Britain would "massively increase testing" amid a growing wave of criticism on Thursday about his government's failure to provide widespread coronavirus screening. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP) (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - APRIL 01: A person in a face mask walks past an 'I heart MCR' sign as they shop in a near deserted city centre mid-afternoon, during the pandemic lockdown and closure of shops, restaurants and businesses on April 01, 2020 in Manchester, United Kingdom. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to many countries across the world, claiming over 40,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
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SALTBURN BY THE SEA, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 30: Residents of Coral Street in Saltburn come out of their homes at 6pm each evening to take part in Sing at Six as the UK adjusts to life under the Coronavirus pandemic on March 30, 2020 in Saltburn By The Sea, United Kingdom. Residents have being coming to their doorsteps and gardens to sing and dance along with each other every evening since the lockdown began as they try and maintain the morale of the street. Coronavirus (COVID-19) has spread to at least 199 countries, claiming over 36,000 lives and infecting more than 752,000 people. There have now been 22,141 diagnosed cases in the UK and 1,408 deaths. (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)
A sign outside the closed-down Prince of Wales pub reads "Thanks to the NHS and all our Key Workers", in Fleet, south west of London, on March 30, 2020, as life in Britain continues during the nationwide lockdown to combat the novel coronavirus pandemic. - Life in locked-down Britain may not return to normal for six months or longer as it battles the coronavirus outbreak, a top health official warned on Sunday, as the death toll reached passed 1,200. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP) (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)
EALING, ENGLAND - MARCH 30: A volunteer from Ealing Soup Kitchen prepares food parcels for clients on March 30, 2020 in Ealing, England. Like many other countries around the world, the United Kingdom is now on lockdown with the public being told to remain indoors and only leave their homes for groceries, healthcare or essential work. Those with no fixed address are facing a crisis as donations dry up and healthcare becomes a priority. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to many countries across the world, claiming over 30,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 30: A woman with an unknown condition is helped from an ambulance at the St Thomas' Hospital on March 30, 2020 in London, England. Hospitals across London are facing a surge in demand for critical care due to The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 30: Soldiers and private contractors help to prepare the ExCel centre which is being made into the temporary NHS Nightingale hospital, comprising of two wards, each of 2,000 people, to help tackle coronavirus on March 30, 2020 in London, England. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to many countries across the world, claiming over 30,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. (Photo by Stefan Rousseau - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
A paramedic wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) exits an ambulance outside St Thomas' Hospital in Westminster, London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A motorist wearing a face mask drives through the streets of Glasgow as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. (Photo by Andrew Milligan/PA Images via Getty Images)
A cyclist makes his way up a quiet Saint Vincent Street in Glasgow as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. (Photo by Andrew Milligan/PA Images via Getty Images)
BIRMINGHAM, - MARCH 29: A man wearing a mask walks past Covid-19 themed graffiti in Birmingham city centre during the nationwide lockdownon March 29, 2020 in Birmingham, United Kingdom. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to many countries across the world, claiming over 30,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
BOURNEMOUTH, ENGLAND - MARCH 28: General views of British Airways planes grounded at Bournemouth Airport on March 28, 2020 in Bournemouth, England. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to many countries across the world, claiming over 25,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)
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He thought of the idea after visiting his 89-year-old mother-in-law, who does not have access to the internet.

He said: "It was just about this community. Not everybody has the technology to stay in touch and a new bit of tech could be quite worrying for older people.

"The red and green card idea was just a very simple message about raising awareness. We don't know everyone's phone number on the street so this worked instead."

He delivered a letter to each of the 39 houses on his road, with two pieces of coloured card and a note explaining the idea.

Stuart and Jane responded to their first red card last week when a pensioner who lives on her own needed groceries while she self isolates.

"My wife was able to do some emergency shopping for a woman who lived alone and needed some supplies," Stuart said.

"She was very grateful. She was quite mindful of strangers at the door but my wife did some shopping for her which was mainly about feeding her cats. She was concerned for their welfare."

At the moment, three quarters of the street are joining in with the scheme and putting the coloured cards in their windows.

Stuart and Jane keep themselves safe by leaving the shopping on the doorstep and making sure they stand six feet away from anyone they help.

Stuart added: "Each of us will respond in time if we see a red window. Our neighbour's children walked to the end of the terrace and they came and knocked on our door and told me that everyone was green.

"It is good to know we have already helped someone. It has already been worthwhile."

Ted Bell, 73, a pastor at Ripon Community Church, lives on the street with his wife Pamela, 63, and thinks the colour cards will really help their family.

He said: "Our street is a little bit remote anyway. We are about twenty minutes walk from a shop if you were to walk. Most people cannot even just pop to the corner shop. I think it is a good idea. We have a green card up at the moment because everything is all right."

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