As COVID-19 continues to impact our world in unprecedented ways, individuals around the globe are donating their time, money, and other resources toward those who’ve been hurt most, those who are most at risk of being hurt, and those who are working to develop cures and vaccines.
In these relatively early days of facing the threats that COVID-19 has placed on countless aspects of our lives, I’ve been inspired by the number of ways I’ve seen people step up to help their neighbors, communities and the world around them.
Ten days ago, two SmartBear employees came up with a way they could make sure everyone here knows both the extent of help that is needed, and how many different ways there are to contribute at this time of need. They posted the following message to our #all-company Slack channel:
As I become more used to this new normal of being stuck working at home, our kids out from schools, and in some countries, people being forced to remain locked in their homes, it also makes me very grateful for what I have. Events like these make you realize what truly is important. I would also say we are lucky to be working at SmartBear.
But it makes me wonder what else we can do. I am sure many of us would like to give and help in any way we can, and you may wonder how you can help a fellow neighbor, your community, state, country and even planet. A couple of us have started a slack channel, #sb-covid19-giving, where we can all post links and pictures of how we are giving back, in case others would like to do the same. We would love for everyone to join us and participate. If you can get out and help, capture it, post it, and let us know how you made a difference.
In these last ten days, this channel has been filled with so many amazing acts of kindness and charity from SmartBear employees around the world. My hope is that what’s been shared here inspires anyone reading to share what you’re doing wherever you are, and that it encourages others to do the same.
“I'm trying to show my support by continuing to pay local businesses - my dog walker, house cleaners, and hair stylist despite not employing their services. It's also been suggested to buy gift cards to restaurants and businesses so that they can use that income now.”
I am a huge believer in giving blood. In this crazy time, donations are low. So, if you can get out and give, PLEASE do—you are actually savings lives! FYI I was on a Zoom meeting while I gave!
“We gave to the Greater Boston Food Bank!”
“I contributed to the Memphis Food Bank. They are sending out 14-day supplies to help low-income and vulnerable populations.”
“I contributed to the Memphis Food Bank. Mid-South Food Bank invests 96 cents of every dollar raised into our programs that serve hungry children, seniors and families throughout the Mid-South.”
“I sent virtual tips to local service industry workers who have lost income stream as a result of COVID-19 shutdown.”
“I dropped these N95 respirator masks off at Norwood hospital this weekend. They have a huge testing location there and have been running very low.”
“Former 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang's new non-profit is accepting donations and redistributing them to low income workers as one-time --and in some cases recurring-- payments. I've contributed to the cause.”
“After finding out an old MacBook of ours met the standards, I reset it and donated it to Palm Beach County Schools. After surveying the student body, it’s estimated they need approx. 11K devices so students can learn from home!”
“We just dropped off 36 fliers on our block with our name/numbers to let people know that if they are elderly or if they end up getting sick, that we would go to the store for groceries, medication, etc. and help out in any other way that they might need. Another idea - our neighborhood is doing is a chalk walk this Saturday. Kids are encouraged to make signs, draw pictures and offer words of encouragement on their driveway/sidewalk. People can get out and go for a walk and checkout the encouraging pictures. So far, 30 families have decided to participate.”
“I dropped a note off to some of our elderly neighbors, offering to help pick up groceries, who I found out were too scared to go out shopping. It's important we look after the most vulnerable.”
“One of our employees has been making midnight Blood Bike runs to Dublin delivering coronavirus samples.”
“I contributed to the purchase of a respirator, which will be transferred to the Multidisciplinary City Hospital of Józef Ostrich in Poznan.”
“I donated the Centaurus foundation to help animals in this difficult time for them, as well.”
“I sent donations to Chabad of China (they hosted me in Hong Kong for a Shabbat dinner in 2018, and the Passover seder in Shanghai in 2019), and to Chabad of Edinburgh (where I live). I also put a note through my neighbour's door with my phone number in case she needs anything brought in. She's not elderly but she definitely has respiratory issues.”
“The BBC has a live feed that focuses on positive events and people looking out for each other.”
“I donated towards PM India care funds.”
From friendly, inspirational sidewalk chalk drawings, to dropping off a friendly note into a neighbor’s mailbox, to contributing toward open-source ventilator projects (like this one, or this one!), there is truly no limit to the kindness that can be, and is being expressed these days by so many people on this earth. As, one of the two originators of SmartBear employees sharing their generous efforts said, “We just thought this could help us get through these times together!”
It was a fantastic idea, because the goal isn’t just to get through this. It’s to get as many others through this as we can.