5 Ways to Help Your Community During COVID-19
For most of us, the COVID-19 crisis has brought big changes to our day-to-day lives, and as we’re adjusting to the changes, we want to let you know we are here for you. And even though we’re social distancing, it’s time to come together as a community to care for one another.
We’ve rounded up five ways you can help now (and in the coming weeks), both from home and safely in your community.
Call people who may be isolated.
As we all practice social distancing, people across our region are facing social isolation or a lack of contact between people and society. The elderly and those in nursing homes and hospitals are most vulnerable and less likely to have visitors, so they may be feeling particularly lonely and disconnected.
Thankfully, technology makes it possible to keep in touch. A simple phone call can make a world of difference to someone living in isolation. Sign up with United Way’s Volunteer Center to make regular calls to those who have no one to reach out to.
Looking to build community virtually? Set up a regular weekly or daily time to have a video call with your friends, family and neighbors. It can help pass the time and keep your loved ones feeling hopeful.
Support your local nonprofits.
From providing access to food for children and families to ensuring seniors have their prescriptions to counseling for those experiencing anxiety and stress, local nonprofits are working hard around the clock to help our neighbors and communities in need. Showing these organizations your support is a great way to help right now.
One great example is volunteering with a local food pantry or food bank to help pack to-go meals or deliver meals to individuals who are homebound (nonprofits are taking extra precautions to keep everyone safe). Have kids at home and looking to get them involved? Check out the DIY volunteer kits your family can create now at home and deliver to a nonprofit in a few weeks.
Be a support system.
We all need a little more support during uncertain times, so maintaining mental health is critical. You or someone you know may be having feelings of stress because of job insecurity, childcare and anxiety about the future. Know the signs that someone might be struggling and how you can help.
To get connected with mental health resources, including counseling for adults and children, contact United Way 2-1-1 by dialing 2-1-1 or 1-800-427-4626, and press 1 to be connected to behavioral health resources. You can also visit 211helps.org.
Take care of yourself.
Keeping yourself healthy is the first step to making sure you can help others. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger.
So, prioritizing self-care is vital, whether that means taking time out of your day for a walk with family, practicing meditation or getting an extra hour of sleep. By adding self-care practices to you and your family’s daily routines, you can help yourself be ready to support others.
Share helpful resources with those in need.
There is so much information in the news and social media today; it’s hard for those looking for help to know where to go. We created a handy Numbers to Know Guide that organizes phone numbers and websites of local and state organizations. From food resources to county health departments to how to secure a small business loan, you can find the help you or someone you know might need. Share this on your social and with your friends and family who may be looking for assistance right now.
United Way’s COVID-19 Response will support organizations that are providing resources right now to community members impacted by this crisis. Learn more about how you can join us and help our community be stronger together.
TAKE ACTION NOW:
- Find a volunteer opportunity you can do at home.
- Share this post with family and friends on social media! “Here are some ways we can all help our community during COVID-19.”