How Are You Helping Others During the Pandemic?

I’m not writing this to boast or float my own boat. I’m writing today to provide ways one can help during this trying time, especially if you are still working because you can work from home.

Today I volunteered for Gleaners Community Food Bank. Work is allowing us to volunteer at community agencies during our working hours as long as it is a reputable place and our work is up-to-date. Since my job entails serving schools and kids, I wanted to help out at a food bank as many more families and children are hurting for food right now.

There were about 30 people on the shift I worked. Some were in the pantry area with others in the food boxing area. I was on the pantry side. My job, along with my partner, was to load boxes of food into cars as they drove through. They would then move to the next station for fruit, vegetables and some meat. Families are allowed to come through once per week. As one might imagine, they are very busy right now. I overheard they provided food to over 1,000 families yesterday. Today, it was almost another 1,000 families. These are families of all types—young, old, disabled and everything in between. I plan on returning next week if given permission.

When I got home, I donated to Wheeler Mission, Gleaners Community Food Bank and Midwest Food Bank. With the need I saw today, I wanted to further support local food banks and shelters.

We ordered take-out today from a local restaurant. Our goal is to do so at least once a week as that is how often we would eat out before. We want to help local restaurants make it through this crisis.

Tomorrow I plan on making all of my materials (although not many, but what I have might help), on Teachers Pay Teachers free. I know many people use this as a supplemental source of income. For me, teachers and families need these resources more than ever with so many schools closed at the moment. Education must go on and we need good stuff out there.

I continually post new resources on Facebook, and my personal and professional Twitter, accounts. If just one teacher or family finds it helpful, it will have been worth it.

I encourage, challenge, request, respectfully ask, or whatever works, to please help out as well, either with time, money, or donations. Even a contribution of $5,00 helps organizations. If you have time, most food banks could use volunteer help. For those of you on Teachers Pay Teachers, open up as many of your resources as possible for free or a much reduced price.

It is only going to get worse before it gets better. We will not survive this well as a country without all of us banding together to help the neediest amongst us. Who knows, someday one of us may need help ourselves, and if it is me, I hope someone is there to help me out.

Pay it forward, and do it now. Many need our help. Let’s step up and help our neighbors and communities.

Won’t you join me in lifting others up, which in turn lifts us all up?

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