15 Practical Ways You Can Help Fight COVID-19

A “Love in the Time of Corona” guide for anyone who wants to make a difference.

Members (and young recruits) of the SoCal Makers team hard at work making and distributing PPE.


1. Donate to local groups who are making PPE and other needed supplies.

All across the country, there are brilliant people who are coming up with solutions to the lack of available personal protective equipment (PPE) and other materials that our front-line workers direly need.

Interview with Eric Gever, creator of the SoCal Makers COVID Response Team. Please donate!
Some of the many healthcare workers the SoCal Makers have already helped.

2. Donate disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer to local hospitals, funeral homes and other orgs.

My friend Maddie is a doctor in Chicago, and when I posted on Facebook for ways people can help, her answer was simple: Take all those Clorox wipes and bottles of Purell you’ve been hoarding and bring them to the workers who really need them.

3. Buy lunch or coffee for your favorite nurse. (Or grocery store cashier. Or FedEx driver. You get the picture.)

My sister is a nurse, and one of the most touching things I’ve seen during this whole mess is the number of her friends who have simply sent her money via Venmo so she can buy herself coffee or a meal (or let’s be honest, wine). Their treat.

4. Send food to hospitals, food banks or other places that can use it.

Taking the above suggestion one step further, you can order food items in bulk and send them to feed medical staff, front-line workers and the homeless or under-nourished.

5. Got an extra home, guest house or other living space you’re not using? Let front-line workers stay there.

This idea comes from my friend Bonnie, who had an NYC apartment she wasn’t using and thought it would be great if others who need a roof could stay there.

6. Donate to the United Way’s pandemic relief fund. (Or donate supplies or time.)

My friend Morgan suggested this. From the United Way’s Los Angeles website: “By chipping in today, you’ll help bring immediate assistance and daily necessities to people living on the streets, people at risk of homelessness, students, individuals, and families.”


7. Help make masks and PPE.

This one was suggested by many friends, including one in Spain, David, who said (in Spanish):

  • Make and sew masks at home. Hospital workers aren’t the only people who need face masks — according to many health experts, we all should be wearing them. So, that means you and approximately 300 million other Americans need something to cover your faces when y’all go outside.
  • If you can’t sew, do what my friend Quinn did: “I gave my friend’s crafting circle some money for supplies,” she said.
Face shields created by the SoCal Makers team.

8. Use your creative abilities for good.

This is one I have experience with: My work with the SoCal Makers group, to this point, has involved creating a website and using my knowledge of marketing to try and amplify the team’s impact.

9. Put pressure on politicians to act.

If you haven’t noticed, there’s been a bit of … shall we say … miscommunication about how to get the right supplies to the places where they’re needed. (If you want to really feel frustrated about the whole thing, read this eye-opening article in The New Yorker.)

10. Volunteer — especially if you discover you have immunity.

I’ve mentioned a few ways to volunteer already, so here I’ll talk specifically about the need for people who are immune to this virus.

11. Donate plasma (if or when you have immunity).

If you are immune, you will also likely be able to donate plasma—which could likely be used as a life-saving treatment for others.

12. Help vulnerable populations.

It is an unfortunate fact that the most underprivileged among us are also most likely to be hit hard by COVID-19. Poorer communities (which tend to disproportionately be communities comprised largely of People of Color and immigrants) lack the resources, healthcare, access to testing and general ability to prevent or treat COVID-19 infection that communities which tend to be whiter and more affluent usually have.

Daily Matters Episode 11, featuring Shaka Senghor.

13. Call people.

No, I don’t mean your family members or friends, although calling them is important, too. I mean calling the people you know who work in healthcare, or who have mental health or addiction issues, or who are infected by COVID-19 or have loved ones who are infected by it.

14. Stay home.

Hopefully, you know this one already. (And you better have washed those hands.)

15. Spread the word—and take action!

One of the reasons I’ve highlighted my friends in this post, other than to thank them, is to show the impact that they might be having simply because they responded thoughtfully to my post. It took very little of their time or effort, but if their suggestions now reach a lot of people, it can have a snowball effect.

  1. Pick at least one item listed in this article, and do it—today!

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world: indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.

P.S. If you have other ideas or suggestions for how people can help that aren’t listed above, let me know! I can always add them to this post or do a follow-up piece.

Please RECOMMEND (clap) and SHARE this story, and always Keep It Movin.

Read other posts from the “Love in the Time of Corona” series by Sam Rosenthal:

Stories about sports, travel, spiritual awareness and all things human. In other words: Life. www.samrose101.com.

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