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Help Needed: What can we do?

newboots

Angel Diva
Of course, we all know we need to stay home if at all possible, keep our distance, and wash our hands as if we were surgeons. And to be outdoors getting some exercise away from others.

It turns out there's another important thing we can do - donate food or cash to the local food bank. I had a donation packed and ready to get there, but I kept skiing on Mondays when our local food shelf is located. Today I packed up a couple dozen pasture-raised eggs along with the other donations, and off I will go as soon as it's open.

Read about it: https://www.thekitchn.com/food-banks-covid19-23013912
 

Jenny

Angel Diva
This. It's amazing how much food they can buy with the cash donation.

Perhaps the best way to support your food banks, however, is for those who can afford it, to donate cash. Food banks purchase in bulk, which means that a dollar in their hands will buy more food than a dollar you spend on your own. According to Feeding America, they can provide at least 10 meals for every dollar you donate. This means even the smallest donations make a big difference.​

I volunteer at the Feeding America warehouse here every Monday. The amount of food that goes through there on its way to agencies and food banks is astonishing.
 

Tvan

Angel Diva
I’m supporting some small local businesses... making online purchases, gift certificates to our local restaurant, sending donations to the animal shelter, and to our fire department. I live in a small town and these small organizations are what make this place special. They can’t work from home, so they stand to lose income. Helping as best I can.
 

mustski

Angel Diva
I’m giving cash directly to neighbors in need via my church. When times get tough, people reach out to the churches since it’s the quickest way to get help. It goes beyond groceries; people often need help with car repairs, gasoline, utilities, life basics.
 

Abbi

Angel Diva
My first order of business may be finding toilet paper for my next-door neighbor! She is 10 years older than I am. She’s doing fine. But said she’s been out a couple of times and haven’t found any. One local grocery chain is starting to run senior hours from 6 AM until 7:30 AM as of tomorrow. Another even more local chain is starting Friday from 7 to 8:30 AM. I am going to take advantage of these early hours and have even set my alarm for tomorrow morning. I’m trying to get that done, only one stop at the drugstore to pick up all potential prescriptions and hope to be more or less done. Obviously there will be forays out but I am avoiding public places. I am getting a lot of walking and a little jogging in. And I am feeding my domestic goose friends around here, too. At 18 years old, they are ‘senior’, too!

My yacht club sent out an email asking if anyone wanted to donate to provide to the bartenders and staff that are out of work. They are going ahead and launching boats so the guys are still working. But the three bartenders are out of work. And since they depended heavily on tips, and two out of three are single mothers, they are in more dire straits than some. They are also my friends and I will try and help.
 

diymom

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Keep in mind that there are other stores that commonly stock paper goods and cleaning supplies- Home Depot, Lowe’s, Staples, etc. A quick call to your local store might be worth while. They won’t be as busy as a grocery store so should have time to answer the phone.
 

SallyCat

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Local churches and senior centers here are arranging meal and prescription deliveries for people who can't get out. Sounds fairly simple, but there are a lot of safety concerns as well, so the emphasis is on relying on friends and family first if at all possible. An organization can't just send a random volunteer to handle someone's drugs and give them access to vulnerable people who are alone at home. So if you know anyone who may need help, it's a good idea to try to keep that support network as known and local as possible.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Learned from my local independent newspaper that a GoFundMe page was set up late last week with the intent to raise relief funds for "hourly and tipped employees" of restaurants for the local Triangle area (Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill in central North Carolina). The organizer is working with two local non-profits.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Advice from the mayor of Durham, NC (15 min from my house) shared in the Indy Week (local indy news):
  • Buy takeout and/or gift certificates from your favorite local restaurants and retail shops.
  • Check in on your neighbors. If you’re healthy and able, run vital errands for at-risk residents (those over age 65 or with secondary health issues).
  • Volunteer to babysit for critical-need workers, especially those in the health care field.
  • Send cards and thoughtful notes to isolated people in senior housing and nursing homes.
  • Make a donation to your favorite charity.
  • Most of all, be kind.
 

Abbi

Angel Diva
My grateful neighbor accepted the TP I found at CVS after shopping this morning.

I’ve never wiped credit cards with wipes before today. I will say it was obvious (@ 6:40 AM) that touchscreens and buttons had been carefully cleaned at the market and CVS. But I’m being very careful.
 

Tvan

Angel Diva
Our neighborhood association is organizing to help each other and local seniors with groceries, prescriptions, check-ins, etc.
 

skibum4ever

Angel Diva
I reached out to several older neighbors but so far they are ok.

My BIL in NYC had a devastating apartment fire last Friday. Under normal circumstances we would be there to help him right now. Fortunately his wife's daughter lives nearby and is doing everything she can to help.

But we feel so helpless...and useless.
 

BlizzardBabe

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Pay your house cleaner or other personal providers "in advance" for a few months to help them weather the immediate cash flow challenges. I'm tipping (remotely) my favorite restaurant servers "in advance."
 

newboots

Angel Diva
Oh no
I reached out to several older neighbors but so far they are ok.

My BIL in NYC had a devastating apartment fire last Friday. Under normal circumstances we would be there to help him right now. Fortunately his wife's daughter lives nearby and is doing everything she can to help.

But we feel so helpless...and useless.

Oh no! So sorry. How difficult for them to have a disaster in the midst of all this!
 

ilovepugs

Angel Diva
Hi. If you’re looking for other ways to help and aren’t yet locked down - call your local blood bank and make an appointment to give blood. I know for certain that UVM Medical Center is already approaching critically short levels.
 

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