There is no doubt that COVID-19 has become an increasing presence our lives. With schools closing, offices implementing work-from-home policies, and communities adopting social-distancing practices, it is hard to ignore the profound effects this virus will have on our society. While it is easy to feel powerless in such an unprecedented situation, T&C has compiled some ways to help others during this challenging time.
Donate Money to Those Helping the Hungry or Sick
National emergencies put the most vulnerable populations at even greater risk. The homeless, elderly, and hungry will need even more aid than before, so a good place to start is with charities that help.
Meals on Wheels will safely deliver food to American senior citizens, who will be unable to leave their homes for a while, as they are at greater risk for the coronavirus. The charity will make sure the elderly are not left to fend for themselves in the midst of this crisis.
Save the Children, a global children's aid charity, started a Coronavirus Response Fund because, while children are at a lower risk for contracting the virus, their families are not. Additionally, the charity will provide training and equipment for healthcare teams and protect children, should their families be subject to quarantine.
The Center for Disaster Philanthropy also has a COVID-19 Response Fund, which will focus on supporting local nonprofits in highly affected areas. The nonprofits focus on a range of coronavirus aid efforts, from supporting healthcare workers to implementing prevention strategies.
Support the Arts
As social distancing becomes the norm to prevent the spread of the virus, arts institutions will take an immediate and profound hit. Many cultural institutions have already shut their doors for the time being, including Broadway theaters and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
There are a few ways to help. First, make a donation to your favorite museum or local arts organization. It will help sustain their income as they can no longer rely on ticket sales. If an event you were scheduled to attend is canceled and you receive a refund, consider donating the price of your ticket back to the institution.
Many singers and bands have had their shows cancelled or postponed. Help mitigate their losses (a bit, at least) by buying some of their merchandise online. This also applies to museums and theater. If you'd like to support a local artist, consider buying a piece of their work, as well. These transactions allow both parties to maintain social distancing, but provide artists and institutions with some extra cash.
Finally, when these places start to open again, buy tickets! You'll need to make up for lost time.
Buy From Small Businesses
Local businesses will certainly take a hit in this climate, as it will be recommended that individuals avoid public places. While stores are still open, buy some items from them now, to help mitigate future losses. Another way to help is to buy gift cards to your favorite local restaurants, stores, from your hair stylist and local spa. The business will get the money today, but you can use it later. Pay in cash, if possible, to avoid further lag time.
The Red Cross is concerned that coronavirus will threaten America's blood supply. As more people contract the virus, fewer people will be eligible to donate blood. The organization asks healthy people to donate blood despite the pandemic, and emphasizes that there is no evidence that COVID-19 can be contracted through blood.
More and more people are cancelling their blood donation appointments, which could cause bigger problems in the future. The Red Cross emphasized that they are being meticulous to prevent spread during donations and keep everyone safe.
"We need people to prevent the blood supply from getting depleted. We need it not to get to the point that surgeries are having to get canceled. That’s something we absolutely do not want to have happen," said Dr. Peter Marks, director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. "To ensure an adequate blood supply we need people to come out and donate blood."
Help People In Your Neighborhood
Call or text older neighbors and relatives to check in. Since individuals over age 60 are considered high-risk, it's recommended that they practice even more stringent social-distancing, but you can chat with them on the phone or by FaceTime. You could also offer to pick up groceries or run errands, as those activities can pose an even greater threat. If you're concerned about any contact with these older individuals, drop off packages at their doorsteps and call or text after you leave.
Listen to the Center for Disease Control's recommendations to help prevent spread. Even if you're not in a high-risk group, it's our communal responsibility to keep vulnerable individuals from contracting the virus. Practice social-distancing. Stay home if you're sick. Wash your hands often and clean off surfaces. Cover your mouth when you sneeze and cough.
Finally, ask those around you how you can help them! If you can maintain your normal salary while working from home, can you help someone who can’t? Are there people who provide you with services who you can support in the interim (babysitters, house cleaners, beauty workers, exercise teachers)? Keep tabs on those close to you and look out for one another.
You Might Also Like