Stuck at home during COVID-19? Here's how you can help.

Posted by Ryan Brander on May 6, 2020 10:55:42 AM

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Local and national nonprofits are doing the bulk of the work to stop the spread of COVID-19. Want to volunteer but don't know how during social distancing? Need some ideas on who to help? Opinions4Good would like to share some nonprofits who are doing essential work in communities around the nation to combat COVID-19 and how you can donate.

Volunteer Digitally to Help a Nonprofit

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, many non-essential businesses, schools, government organizations and nonprofits have been forced to close or limit their operations until further notice. The Department of Labor reports that a staggering 37 million employees have filed for unemployment in the last five weeks. People around the nation are voluntarily self-quarantining in an effort to reduce the rate of transmission.

Along those lines a, a recent April poll of Opinions4Good business professionals conducted online found that 54% of respondents were currently working remotely. Despite this, it also found that 44% of those polled currently volunteer their time in some capacity at a nonprofit. Over half are donating more (36%) or the same amount (19%) due to the pandemic. 

Given these radical changes, you may be wondering ow can you continue to support your nonprofit or community from home. There are many ways to do so without risking spread coronavirus and endangering yourself or others who are more highly at risk. Four things you can do include:

  • Donate to a food bank like Feeding America. A $5 donation goes a long way, and food banks are reporting a recent 70% increase in need. Alternatively, ask your local food bank if there are virtual volunteer opportunities like making thank-you cards for donors. 
     
  • Make and donate a homemade face mask to a hospital or other organization. While personal protective gear has recently become more available, the needs of many organization still haven’t been met.
     
  • Volunteer your time remotely to a crisis hotline for those struggling with mental health during isolation. Alternatively, you can remotely provide companionship to quarantined seniors or mentor a student forced to stay at home due to a school closure.
     
  • Help our healthcare responders. If you have a surplus of disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer, soaps, goggles or disposable gloves, you may want to check with your local hospital to see if they are in need. They likely will have a contactless drop-off area for such donations.

You can also opt to support your favorite local or international nonprofit by volunteering your time with Opinions4Good. While we do offer cash incentives for participation in market research studies, we also allow our panelists to donate 25 to 100% of their earnings to their nonprofit of choice. Don't see your preferred nonprofit? Drop us an email and we will gladly reach out on your behalf.  Already a member but want to adjust your donation percentage or begin donating?  Click here.

Nonprofits in Need

Local and national nonprofits alike are hurting for want of volunteers and funding during this turbulent time. Organizations that typically depend on fundraising for their standard operating budget are being forced to cancel crucial events.  Below are just a few nonprofits that would welcome a donation in any form in order to support communities around the nation as we all attempt to flatten the curve.

Center for Disaster Philanthropy Covid-19 Response Fund

CFDPThe Center for Disaster Philanthropy is currently raising funds to help preparedness, containment efforts, response and recovery activities for those affected by COVID-19 and for the responders.  Funds are being raised for personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers—with money going toward supplying masks, gowns, gloves and other equipment. By donating, you will also be supporting quarantined and vulnerable individuals and promoting awareness campaigns that are helping to flatten the curve. You can donate here.

Direct Relief

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Direct Relief is a humanitarian aid organization active in the United States and more than 80 countries worldwide. Its mission is to improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty or widespread emergencies such as Covid-19. The organization is currently delivering PPE masks, exam gloves and gowns to healthcare facilities with confirmed Covid-19 cases. You can donate here.

No Kid Hungry

9890152_300x300Given school closures, No Kid Hungry has been deploying funds to ensure access to free meals continues for children in need. They’ve provided over $5 million in emergency grants since the pandemic started to help schools and community groups feed kids during the outbreak while educating families on resources they can utilize in lieu of school meals. You can donate here.

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation

RWCF+woiiide+jpg+logoSince the first confirmed case of Covid-19, restaurants and food businesses have been affected in various ways, from partial/full shutdowns to layoffs to financial desperation. The Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation is an advocacy and action nonprofit created by and for restaurant workers. As of May 4, the Covid-19 relief fund has raised $4.87 million through private and corporate donations. The RWCF provides zero-interest loans to businesses to maintain payroll costs during the closure and re-opening phases of the crisis. You can donate here.

American Red Cross

American_Red_CrossWhile many people routinely donate to the Red Cross, the pandemic has brought about cancellations of blood drives, resulting in a severe blood shortage. Healthy individuals are urged to give blood by booking an appointment at one of the recently opened donation sites. At these sites, Red Cross workers are checking temperatures and following social distancing protocols while maintaining a sterile environment. Learn more here.

United Way Worldwide

The United Way Worldwide supports local United Ways around the country, organizations which have made it their mission to support communities struggling to adequately respond to Covid-19. Furthermore, they operate the 211 network, which is provides a vast array of resources from services to veterans to support for those with mental illness/substance misuse issues to general information about shelter and housing options. To donate, please click here.

The Takeaway

These are simply a few ways to help. By practicing social distancing and self-quarantining, you are already helping the nation recover from Covid-19. If you can, however, monetary donations or gifts of your time are welcomed by all the above organizations. We also suggest checking in with your smaller local nonprofits to see if they need a helping hand—as nearly every community charity is likely experiencing new and pressing challenges due to Covid-19. Virtual volunteer opportunities are a great way to lend your skillset and time to a nonprofit in need—whether it is data entry/administrative work, food delivery, or starting a Facebook fundraiser with friends.

Remember: During social distancing, there are still many ways to help! Contact your local nonprofit today and be a part of the national and local recovery effort.

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Topics: Surveys, Op4G Members, Nonprofit Spotlights, Volunteering, COVID-19, Coronavirus