By Master Trainer Elizabeth Harlan
We all know the basic ways we can help: washing our hands, social distancing, and staying home when feeling sick. While these measures will help, there are a number of other ways that we can provide support to the members of our communities who are suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ways to help in your community
If you are financially able to do so, there are a number of ways that you can support your community. One way to do that is by ordering takeout from your favorite local restaurant.
Restaurant workers are facing economic hardship with the loss of shifts and tips. This is due to the fact that many restaurants across the country have been closed to all but delivery or takeout services to prevent the spread of COVID 19.
Another way to help is by purchase gift cards to your favorite stores. You can also provide support by donating money to your favorite local charity, food bank, nursing home, hospital, or shelter. There are a list of some organizations you could donate to at the end of this blog.
While all of the groups listed above would be happy to receive a financial donation, they are also in desperate need of other types of support. In some cases, they need supplies like:
- Hand Sanitizer
- Toilet Paper
For other organizations, their most desperate need is volunteers. There are many ways to help during the COVID-19 pandemic by volunteering. Organizations like the United Way, food banks, homeless shelters, and Meals on Wheels would appreciate any help they can get from healthy members of the community, due to increased demand for their services at this time. These organizations are working hard to protect volunteers by following the CDC’s recommendations for social distancing. Another way you can help in person, is by donating blood. You can go online at www.redcross.org to find a local blood drive near you.
Ways to help from your home
However, if you would like to help from the comfort of your own home, you can call your neighbors, friends, and family to make sure that they are doing well and not feeling isolated, or alone, during the pandemic. You could also sign up for an app like Quarantine Chat that would randomly put you in contact with other people, from around the world, who are self-isolating and may be feeling lonely. The app doesn’t give out your phone number, and provides a topic for you to discuss with the other person.
There are many ways that you can help yourself and others during this outbreak. Some resources for how you can help are listed below. Resources are national or listed by state where possible.
National Organizations (for donations and/or volunteers):
- Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) COVID-19 Response Fund
- Feeding America
- Healthcare Ready
- Meals on Wheels America
- National Association of Free & Charitable Clinics
Local Ways to Help During COVID-19 Pandemic
- United Way Massachusetts Bay
- The Greater Boston Food Bank
- The Boston Foundation
- Here’s what you need to know about Boston’s centralized volunteer recruitment site during COVID-19
Check out other blog posts:
Read some of our other blogs to help you navigate your way through the pandemic: How to Work From Home With Kids, Autism Mom Blog: COVID-19 Edition, and Increase Staff & Client Cleanliness using Behavioral Analysis.