Get Involved With The Community During The COVID-19 Outbreak
During times of crisis and uncertainty, many of us look for ways to make a difference in the community. For many of us, it’s in our nature to help others when things get rough, and right now is a difficult time for many of our neighbours. Between job loss, financial insecurity and the visceral threat of infection to the livelihood of many, we all face very real hazards each day.
As a member of your community, you may be wondering what you can do in all of this. While it may feel like your contributions can’t affect change, that’s not true at all. There are countless ways to help your community during this pandemic, and we’ve listed a few that can get you started.
Give free or discounted services to frontline workers
While many businesses have been forced to close their doors and minimize the risk of infection to the community, essential services such as grocery stores, drug stores, and others have to stay open so that people can buy food and other necessities. This puts workers at the most immediate risk of infection, and a large percentage of the COVID-19 cases in the world are frontline workers.
Frontline employees are working bravely each day to make sure we can all stay home safely with everything we need. To say thank you for all of their efforts, consider discounting your services to frontline workers, or even offering some services to them for free if applicable. Simply ask that workers offer a form of identification to confirm they are a frontline employee.
Run a food drive for your community
Following wide-spread shutdowns, unemployment rates skyrocketed across the world this past spring. Even with governments offering financial help during this time, there are many people who have suffered great financial loss and cannot afford to pay rent, feed their families, or access medication they need.
Now would be a fantastic time to gather resources for struggling families. Send out newsletters and social media posts asking your students or members to donate their spare food to your local food bank. While it is much easier to gather food items with a physical business location open, if you are still operating out of your school or studio—but not open to the public—ask members to drop food donations off for you to collect.
Help deliver necessities to vulnerable people
Even though essential services are still operating and social distancing efforts are in place, there is still a great risk of infection for vulnerable people in our communities, such as seniors and people with compromised immune systems. For many, mobility presents a huge roadblock, and even just getting to shops can be a hurdle. This, topped with the added fear of infection, can make even getting groceries a terrifying ordeal for our most at-risk.
Luckily, we have seen goodwill from people who can deliver goods to their compromised neighbours during this time. Consider asking members to join into the cause and ask the vulnerable people around them if they need help in accessing necessities during this time. The City of Grande Prairie did just this and set up a system for people in the county to request help if they couldn’t get food or medicine themselves.
Partner with local organizations to gather donations
There are plenty of areas and specific groups in your community who could benefit from extra help right now, including youth groups, family services, animal shelters, and more. If you have existing relationships with these local organizations, start a campaign to send a portion of your proceeds to these groups, and make sure your members know they can help a local organization through this!
Right now, this is a great time to give back to the community, if it’s within your means to do so. We are all in this together and will get through this by helping one another out and supporting our communities.