Happy Friday. One thing I have been thinking a lot about is how to help those heavily affected by COVID-19. Honestly, everyone needs help. It’s scary how many people need help, and it’s hard to know WHO to help when you have limited time and resources and we need to avoid social contact. My best advice (and what I am doing) is to pick a few things you feel strongly about, and do those things as best and as much as you can. Do the things that appeal to you most – if we all do that, these small acts can add up to bigger things. This obviously is not a comprehensive way to help absolutely everyone; but it’s a start. I’d love for you to share your ideas in the comments!
COVID-19: How to Help
First of all, STAY THE F*CK HOME! If, at this point, you are out socializing, I am shook. Please stay in. It isn’t about you getting sick, it’s about stopping the spread. A few of the things I am mentioning here will involve leaving the house, but they are for good reasons. And while you’re at it, call your parents and tell them to stay in, too! I did this… and know a lot of you did the same. And also: don’t hoard masks and toilet paper! (If you did, you can always donate them back!!)
I made a pretty big donation to my local food bank (Foodbank NYC) but Crooked Media just set something really cool up and that is where I plan to donate next.
It’s their relief fund, which donates to a range of amazing charities: Feeding America, Meals on Wheels, No Kid Hungry, National Domestic Workers Alliance, the National Domestic Workers Alliance, the CDC Foundation, and Direct Relief. I love this as we’ve all been told to spread our donations around, and this does exactly that.
Help the Homeless.
To look up shelters in your community and donate directly to them, use this site.
Support Small Businesses + Restaurants.
Small businesses and restaurants are being hit especially hard. Food and Wine has a great piece on how to help restaurants without even leaving your home. From buying gift cards that you’ll use later (or placing orders now and letting them know you don’t expect to receive anything now), to writing positive reviews on yelp to ordering take out, there is a lot you can do!
Also if you are healthy, consider giving blood. With the pandemic happening, supply is running low (and people are afraid to donate!) According to the Red Cross + CDC, it’s safel A blood shortage is very scary for anyone currently relying on donated blood (people with chronic illnesses, cancer, etc) or anyone having an unexpected accident or emergency.
If you are healthy, especially if you have a car, consider volunteering with Meals on Wheels and/or other local delivery services. Elderly people who can’t leave their homes need your help! A little googling will help, too. Local to Brooklyn, my friend discovered Heights and Hills. Similar to Meals on Wheels, you can sign up to deliver food, but another thing you can do is train to do check-in calls with the elderly. You’ll just call and say hello and see how they are doing, if they need help, and so on and so forth.
Become a Care Buddy!
Call to Care is a great organization; they recognize that many people feel alone and isolated right now. They are cross generational pen pals (they pair under 70 folks with over 70 folks) together as “care buddies.” The point is to laugh, share worries, talk about TV shows, and and foster community. I signed up last night!!!
What are your favorite ways to help out?
These are great ideas! I’ve been trying to support small businesses for a while now – it’s so disheartening to see them struggle! 🙁
Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
This past January I volunteered with my community’s Council on Aging, which is an org that connects elderly community members with help, from shoveling snow to delivering food. I’m sure cities all over have some iteration of this organization. Since I was familiar, I emailed the one local to me and they are setting me up to drive for Meals on Wheels in the next couple of weeks! Definitely worth a google search. Thank you for all the great ideas, Grace!
That is fantastic! Thanks for sharing!
Grace, you’re really handling this all with grace 🙂 this post is fantastic and I really see communities coming together. It’s a hard time but also a special time to see what people are doing to help others.
I’ve been Venmoing my nurse friends (or anyone on the front lines) for their afternoon coffee to keep up morale since I can’t imagine what they’re going through. The little things can go a long way!
Aw thank you Brianna! And I love that idea!!!! Sending you hugs (or a fist bump/elbow tap, lol) from Brooklyn.
I love this post. I’ve already signed up for Meals on Wheels, and I’ve been donating to local food banks and charities (Open Arms Minnesota is a great one for anyone in Minnesota). I just signed up for Call to Care! I’m so excited!!
Aw amazing! I’m excited about Call to Care as well.
I am in MN and will donate tomorrow. I gave some to Loaves and Fishes but it’s great to hear of another great charity!
That’s awesome!!!! Well done for donating.
Grace, thank you for talking about what’s going on, staying calm, and making us feel like we can help from our homes. I just donated to the Crooked relief fund. Thanks for sharing!!
That is awesome, thank you for donating!
Do you know anyway that we can help get our healthcare workers access to N95 masks?
I wish I knew! They are so hard to obtain; I wouldn’t know how to even get one to give to someone in healthcare!!!
Love you Grace! You are such a breath of fresh air. It has been very disappointing seeing bloggers continue to push the shop, shop, shop, swipe up, swipe up etc….. Nice to see someone who can think outside of themselves
Aw thanks Sharon – think it’s important to have a good balance!
Hi Grace! This is an amazing list! As a longtime follower, I wanted to let you know that I work for United Way of New York City and we launched a COVID-19 Community Fund and we’re helping the NYC community as much as we can- with an emphasis on access to emergency food (We work with FoodBankNYC too!) and access to digital education for low-income families with children out of school right now. More information here: https://unitedwaynyc.org/covid19
Thank you for all that you’re doing!
That is amazing! Thank you so much for sharing.
All great ideas!
Thank you! 🙂
Could you make this so we can share it on instagram?? Such a great post – want others to see it too!
Like a graphic? No, i’m sorry – that’s not something I have the bandwidth to do right now. But you can do what I do – screenshot it from your phone and post to stories! Happy you enjoyed the post!
What a helpful post! I work in healthcare and am sending out a daily “Good Stuff” email to our staff to keep spirits up, will share your links Monday!
Aw that makes me so happy! Thanks for sharing!
Would you let us know how working with call to care goes? I work in higher education and might like to share this organization. We are launching an emergency medical school volunteer corps and are looking for some additional “no contact” opportunities.
Sure! I signed up but no one has contacted me back yet. I don’t have a relationship with them or anything, just signed up like a regular person! I’d recommend maybe contacting them directly; perhaps you can partner!