Turbulent Times Call for Compassionate Communities: 17 Ways to Give Back During the COVID-19 Pandemic & Social Distancing by Kim Kusiciel
We've seen the love pouring out of Italy balconies and across barren squares around the globe. Living in America's heartland has given me hope. Within hours of schools and community centers closing down, members of our communities came together to promote inspiration, love and compassion for others.
In a matter of a weekend, one local high school raised over $10,000 for families in need. A neighborhood collected non-perishable food items to pass out to the community. Teachers everywhere collaborated to share free online resources with families. Young and healthy teens offered to volunteer in place of older, at-risk volunteers. My heart is inspired from the love and compassion that communities are bringing to the center of this pandemic.
If you are looking for a way to give back without putting yourself at risk consider these options:
- Buy gift certificates today for local businesses to use after the shut-down ends.
- Don't ask for a refund on programs or classes so that future programs can run.
- Support local restaurants by using carry-out or delivery services.
- Instead of buying online from big box stores check out your local store.
- Donate where you can to help families put food on their tables.
- Set up a community or neighborhood swap for games, puzzles, books and movies.
- Offer services remotely to help others in need using services like Zoom.
- Start a local group on Facebook to stay connected with each other.
- Tip your food, grocery and service delivery drivers a little bit extra if you can.
- Share goods and services online or in your community, if possible.
- Reach out and say thank you to the organizations still providing services.
- Thank your school personnel that are rapidly putting remote learning plans together.
- Stagger your purchasing needs of everyday items.
- Go grocery shopping for your at-risk neighbors.
- Use free online resources to keep your children occupied.
- Organize a drive/bike/walk-by wave in your neighborhood.
- Use social media so share your musical talent with the hashtag #togetherathome.
Don't forget that a smile is free, appreciation goes a long way and patience is key. We will get through these troubling times, but we need to remember to rely on each other and that staying in our homes is the greatest act of love for our neighbors that we can display. Buying local and supporting neighborhood businesses helps keep your local economy afloat and gives hope to those fearful that their American Dream might not survive this pandemic.
Most of all, give yourself, your kids and others grace. Many of us have never faced anything like this and we are bound to make mistakes, say the wrong thing or be too hard on ourselves for not doing enough.
We are all in this together. Our communities will come out on the other side of this stronger because of the compassion we show each other right now.
Take 30 seconds and join the 30Seconds community. Inspire and be inspired.
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