5 Ways to Help Your Community Right Now

Art: @analeovy_art

In this strange time, making that extra effort to be kind and compassionate is good for us all. Whether it’s checking in on your elderly relatives or connecting with a friend, every bit counts. 

If you’re able to lend a hand, here’s five ways you can help keep the community spirit strong.

 

CONNECT:

phone home, call friends and neighbours — talk, listen and reassure.
two women smiling on the phone side by side

@hej.anji

It is important to keep connected even when we aren’t able to be together in person. Check in on your friends and your family – even those who seem the toughest, you never know how they’re dealing underneath the surface. Technology offers so many different ways to reach out to your friends and family. You could Skype-call-text-Whatsapp-Snapchat-iMessage-GoogleHangout, whatever suits!

You could even get creative with tech by trying out plugins like Netflix Party, a Chrome extension that allows you to watch movies with one another, even if you’re not in the same room.

COOK UP: 

prepare extra food, drop-off a dish and share excess supplies.

@frances_cannon

Why not try out some fun new recipes in this time like these heavenly cookie recipes. A great snack for you and your family but also a nice one to drop off on doorsteps around the neighbourhood.

If savoury is your thing then we’ve got you sorted as well. As we’re all hunkering down to weather the storm, there’s nothing better than a home-cooked meal. Good Food has just published a collection of quarantine recipes to get you started.

BE SOCIAL: 

use your social to check-in, share good ideas and positive news. 
good things happen love is real we will be okay

@adamjk

Social media has it’s good and bad points but at the end of the day, it’s a tool for communication. When it’s used well, we can help create stronger, more connected communities. Case in point: Italian citizens singing together from their balconies. Bellissima!

If you need a laugh (who doesn’t) there is no shortage of quarantine memes to keep us smiling in the darkest of times. For an extra dose of #cute, share this video of penguins roaming free around a closed aquarium.

While you are being a force for good on social media, make sure to regularly log off and after your mental health. Balance is key.

STAY KIND: 

check-in on the elderly, people with disabilities and any carers you know. Offer to assist where you can. 
two grandmothers standing in windows sharing coffee

@martina_illustrates

Don’t forget – lending a hand can also be something as simple as sending good vibes. Sending letters is pretty old school but they are super lovely to write and receive. You might write letters for:

  • your grandparents + any elderly folks you know
  • family + friends
  • your neighbours
  • staff at your local hospital, supermarket and pharmacy.

If you do head out for supplies, remember to give an extra dose of good vibes to supermarket and pharmacy staff. They need our support.

LEAD: 

don’t wait for others to act – take the lead. 

Why not try out some projects to help the community in your own home? Start a book swap or book club with your friends on Skype/Google Hangout/Zoom (if you can’t get hold of a book, how about a podcast club?). 

You might use this time to do some spare time to clear out any old clothes, toys or books and set up a charity bin outside your home. If your household has it spare, you could also include any extra essential items such as toilet paper or canned goods for others in the neighbourhood. 

Another beautiful way that communities are coming together and showing support is putting bears in their windows for kids to search for while going on walks. You could also make posters or signs for the window to give folks a smile as they pass, or tack up a ‘take what you need’ sheet out on the street. 

One of the best ways to relieve our own stress is to focus on something else such as helping out others. Staying strong as a community means staying connected and being compassionate toward one another. Do what you can, when you can, and we’ll get through this together.

If you’re under the weather or dealing with some big issues of your own, this might be a time to step back, and that’s okay. If you or anyone you know needs urgent help, we’ve compiled a list of support services so you can find the right assistance for you. 


Rosie Ward 

Rosie is a full-time masters student, and part time dumpling enthusiast. Her loves include second hand bookstores, her growing cactus collection and intersectional feminism.

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