Coping in Isolation: Raúl – COVID Video Series

RAÚL, 37, Berlin, Germany

Raul, a man with short, brown hair, glasses and a hat sits in a wheelchair and smiles slightly.
Raul lives with Osteogenesis imperfecta. © Anna Spindelndreier, 2020

Raúl is a disability activist from Germany, who has been working in the online and media world for more than 15 years. He founded the non-profit ’Sozialhelden’ and invented ‘wheelmap,’ a crowdsourcing, online platform to find wheelchair-accessible places around the world. Raúl regularly protests against German laws affecting people with disabilities, and is well-known for his undercover stay in a group home for people with disabilities and his sharp-tongued tweets.

In his video, Raúl speaks about how the isolation affects his mental health and how he copes.

 

COVID-19 Video Transcript

My name is Raúl, and I am 39 years old, and I am currently living in Berlin, Germany. I am the founder of the online platform wheelmap.org, an online map for wheelchair-accessible places worldwide.

Isolation

In Germany, we have been living in a lockdown for weeks. I am now in my home office. I have always had the possibility to work from home, of course. But the additional isolation from my social circle makes it really harder for me to cope with my mental health and strength. It feels very scary to see my assistance coming with face masks all the time, and I don’t know how long they will keep wearing them.

Coping with COVID

I try to cope with this situation by sharing the best time possible with my flatmates, and I use a telephone more often than regularly, by staying in contact with my friends, and family, and colleagues, and having just a small chat with them.

Please…

But please, very important, look out for each other; find people in your neighborhood who really are in need. 

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