12 things you can do to help during the coronavirus pandemic
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As we go from scrolling through every coronavirus news update on Twitter to watching every press conference on TV, we’ve asked ourselves many times: What can we do to help? And we imagine you have too!

So if you’re looking for ways to do good during this time filled with so much uncertainty and fear, we hope these ideas give you some inspiration for how to help yourself, loved ones, and fellow beings – near and far away. 

12 things you can do to help during the coronavirus pandemic

1. Stay home

Yep. It’s as simple as that. Get cozy, slow down, and stay home. 

ways to help coronavirus

Going stir-crazy? We got you. Here are some fun ways to pass the time:

2. Check in on your neighbors 

Whether or not you’re BFFs with your neighbors, now is a great time to forge some kind of connection. This week they may be the ones in need of dog food, but next week you might be the one fresh out of toilet paper! So even if it feels a little forced, consider sending a quick text to check in on how they’re doing or putting a little note on their doorstep (just be sure to wash your hands first!). 

3. Stay socially connected to your loved ones

ways to help coronavirus

From FaceTime dates to simple texts —  it’s easier than ever to stay socially connected while practicing socially distancing. Plan a virtual happy hour or tea time with friends, throw a digital “watch party,” or try an online book club (start with these 7 powerful books for sustainable living). And while hugs are out of the question, the hugging emoji will just have to do in the meantime! 

4. Write online reviews

Use your voice to spread the love to all the places/things you love! 

  • Compliment your favorite cafe with a Yelp review 
  • Rave about a good book you just devoured on GoodReads 
  • Give a kind Etsy review to support an independent artist

5. Buy books from local bookshops 

What better way to spend your days hunkering down in your home than with a good read? So do a quick google search to see if your local bookstore is doing any online business before checking out on Amazon. 

For some inspiration, here are some local shops selling books online:

And if you’re hoping to stock up on some cute merchandise from your fave bookstore, now’s a great time to do it!

6. Get gift cards to local restaurants

Whether or not you feel comfortable ordering takeout right now is up to you. But one way we can give a little love to local eateries is by giving a gift to our future selves by purchasing restaurant gift cards. And if you’re anything like us, you’ll be stoked for the day you can sit at a restaurant and not clean dishes after eating. 

7. Tip generously

ways to help coronavirus

If you’re getting groceries or takeout delivered, consider giving a generous tip to thank the delivery workers who help make our lives retain a sense of normalcy during this very strange time. 

8. Consider fostering a pet

Between animal shelters across the U.S. begging for help and people looking for extra comfort with their time indoors, fostering a pet can be a beautiful way to give back and get a whole lot of love in return. Hello, dog snuggles and cat kisses!

ways to help coronavirusBut be real with yourself and make sure you’re ready to take on the financial and emotional responsibilities that come with taking care of an animal. 

9. If you can, continue to pay dog walkers, gardeners, house cleaners, or trainers

If you’re in a place of financial stability, consider continuing to pay your gardener, dog walker, house cleaner, or anyone who depends on regular income from you. And it doesn’t have to be charity if you don’t want it to be, but more like credit.

ways to help coronavirus

For example, coming to an agreement that by paying your trainer for workouts in April when they aren’t working, you’re covering their work for the month of September (a time when they’re hopefully in a better position financially). Of course, this requires trust and communication, but it can be a generous way to give people a bit of a buffer during this uncertain time. 

10. Take care of you

We probably have all been guilty of going to work or school when we knew deep down we should have stayed at home. Especially with limited sick days and unlimited responsibilities, it can be tempting to push ourselves. But this experience has shown us how important it is to take care of ourselves, which ultimately, is a way of taking care of others. 

ways to help coronavirus

That means: stay home from work instead of plowing through tissues at your desk. Skip travel plans and don’t board a plane with a sore throat. And resist shaking hands/interacting with others when you feel a cold coming on. Oh, and wash your hands! 

11. Donate

The list of organizations working in overdrive right now to serve others is extensive. 

Here are some organizations doing so much to make others feel a little less overwhelmed right now. 

  • American Red Cross: Red Cross volunteers and staff work to deliver vital services – from providing relief and support to those in crisis, to helping people be prepared to respond in emergencies.
  • First Book: This non-profit provides new books, educational resources, and other essentials—including coats, snacks, and hygiene kits—to educators serving children in need.
  • Feed the Children:  A non-profit focused on alleviating childhood hunger.
  • Meals on Wheels: Local Meals on Wheels programs are on the front lines every day, focused on doing all they can to keep older Americans safe and nourished in communities across the country.
  • Direct Relief: Direct Relief works in the U.S. and internationally to equip doctors and nurses with life-saving medical resources to care for the world’s most vulnerable people.
  • The Humane Society: This non-profit is dedicated to rescuing and taking care of thousands of animals in need. They’re also assembling a toolkit for animal shelters to help them respond to the needs of their community. 
  • Best Friends Animal Society:  The pet rescue and advocacy organization has the largest no-kill sanctuary in the U.S. They’re also working relentlessly to educate people on ways to protect their pets during COVID-19. 

12. Make & donate face masks

Put your crafting skills to good use and make a homemade face mask (or 10). By donating your creations, you’ll be helping healthcare workers who truly need the extra protection. And if you don’t know where to drop off your masks, JOANN department stores are accepting drop offs and donating them to local hospitals. And of course, if you have a bunch of face masks in your closet — do the right thing and donate them to health care workers who need them.

Have more time on your hands recently? We’ve got some fun personality quizzes to keep you distracted!

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