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  • Writer's pictureAmit Banerjee

Ways to Help During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Updated: Apr 29, 2020


After reaching out to friends and community contacts, I've curated a list of opportunities to help during the COVID-19 outbreak. I've included various virtual and in-person volunteering opportunities.


These opportunities are primarily in the DFW area. If you aren’t located in or around Dallas, let me know and I can get you plugged into organizations in your region.


Additionally, if you know of (or are) someone 21 or younger who’s finding ways to help those in need during this trying time, please have them submit a story of their service to Philanthropy Kids at philanthropykids.org/submit


— Last Updated April 19, 2020 16:00 CDT

Resources

Communities Foundation of Texas COVID-19 Portal

This is a foundation that supports hundreds of nonprofits in the area. During this crisis, they have been initiating various programs to support the DFW region. These programs include:

  • The North Texas Community Response Fund and the North Texas Cares Fund that will grant out money to nonprofits who have been affected by the outbreak.

  • Get Shift Done employment program to give those who have been temporarily furloughed or permanently laid off the chance to work for different relief organizations like homeless shelters and food banks.

This is a Dallas-based organization that created a platform to connect volunteers with causes they want to get involved with.

  • The have a list of virtual and in-person opportunities to help out. You can organize the options by location to find something close to you.

North Texas Giving Tuesday Now - May 5th

A partnership between United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, Communities Foundation of Texas's, and the Dallas Cowboys to raise money for nonprofits in the DFW region.


Virtual Volunteering

North Texas Food Bank

A hunger organization located in Plano that provides food to communities from Waxahachie to the Red River by providing food resources to local food pantries in these areas.

  • Social Media Ambassadors is a program that engages community members to share information about the services that NTFB offers. During a time of crisis, many become food insecure and are relying food pantries for the first time. Joining this program helps them learn about the resources they can employ to not go hungry

  • NTFB is helping individuals start focused food drives to collect a single type of item. For example, you might be responsible for collecting as many cans of tuna as possible while someone else is collecting soup cans.

United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

UWMD is a major foundation that works with corporations and individuals to enhance their social impact in the Dallas region through fundraising programs and other community initiatives.

  • They have a bunch of Virtual Volunteering opportunities from making cards for nursing home residents to making videos for kids who are out of school.

Points of Light

This is an international NGO started by President George H. W. Bush to engage local communities in solving global problems.

  • They have put together a bunch of virtual volunteering projects that you can send to your friends outside of the DFW area.

Girls Inc.

Girls Inc. is an organization that provides girls ages 6-18 from low-income families with resources and support to become healthy, educated, and independent young women.

  • They have learned that many of the girls they work with are stressed and overwhelmed because they are learning remotely. Without one-on-one homework help at school, the students feel alone and confused in their academics.

  • Here is a video about their new tutoring program: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFJfm_OCpbE&feature=youtu.be

  • Here is the link to apply to join the virtual tutor team: https://bit.ly/34fIwqg.

United to Learn

United to Learn is a nonprofit that aims to bridge public and private schools with the community at-large through various educational programs and community engagement initiatives.

Vogel Alcove

Vogel Alcove is a childcare program for homeless kids under the age of five.


In-person Volunteering

Better Block

An urban design nonprofit that typically revitalizes urban spaces to bring people together. Since this proves difficult in a time of social distancing, they have been using their construction equipment (3D printers, laser cutters, woodshed, etc.) to create PPE for healthcare workers.

  • They are regularly seeking out volunteers to help them put together masks that can be distributed to hospitals.

Union

A coffee shop and community center that strives to cultivate the divine spark in the people of Dallas by hosting a variety of community programs from storytelling showcases to worship services

  • They are creating a massive corps of volunteers that nonprofits in the area can use to fulfill whatever needs arise. You can let Union know how you are willing to serve and they can accommodate those requests.

TangoTab Feed The City

TangoTab is a mobile app that feeds a person in need every time you dine out. Feed The City is a volunteering project they started a few years ago to engage the community with the issue of hunger.

CitySquare

This is a homeless shelter in Dallas that has been engaging volunteers to organize supply drives and serve food at the shelter.

  • They have some projects you can complete at home like making care packages, writing notes of support, etc.

Pets Alivehttps://www.genesisshelter.org/genesis-hub/

This is an education organization that focuses around building awareness on animal homelessness and understanding how we can prevent shelters from having to kill pets that don’t get adopted.

  • They are currently looking for people to foster animals during the pandemic

Dallas Animal Services

This is an agency of the City of Dallas that provides shelter to lost animals.

  • They are also looking for foster homes for the animals in their shelter.


Donation Needs/Wish Lists

Heart House

  • Devices (laptops or tablets) to help our teachers connect to their students for virtual help. Email Tori Hobbs, thobbs@hearthousedallas.org if you are able to provide.

The Bridge Homeless Recovery Center

  • In desperate need of supplies such as anti-bacterial wipes and sprays, hand sanitizer, paper towels, thermometers, and bottled water so that our Guests can stay hydrated without having to frequent the communal water fountains and risk the spread of more germs.  The Bridge Amazon Wish List

Community Partners of Dallas

  • We are currently desperate for formula (all types), baby food, and tablets so kids can keep up with schoolwork while sheltering at home. Place donations in boxes at the warehouse door at 7950 Elmbrook Drive, Dallas, Texas 75247 then email Joanna Clarke, joanna@cpdtx.org if you need a donation receipt.

Rainbow Days

  • Ways to Help In-kind + Resources for You & Your Family – We want you to know that we care about you and your family. If your child is experiencing anxiety, this is a great time to start a daily “check-in” to give them an opportunity share their feelings. In our support groups, we call this activity “Sunshine and Cloud.” A “Sunshine” is something that makes you feel happy, and a “Cloud” is something that makes you feel sad or angry. We begin every support group with this activity, which is also a great tool to adapt and do each day in your own household. We would love to offer you this free resource for you to use with your family: download a copy of a “Sunshine and Cloud” here. Additionally, linked here are further resources for how to talk to your kids about the current

Voices of Hope Ministries

Wilkinson Center

Pets Alive

Genesis Women’s Shelter

Promise House

  • With a lot of the children from Promise House relying on getting outdoors with volunteers and staff to socialize, a lot of the youth are struggling with the shelter-in-place. Promise House put together a Promise House Amazon Wish List of items so that the youth could better pass the time while staying indoors.

Legacy Counseling Center

Thanks-Giving Foundation


I want to give a shoutout to the following individuals and organizations that have helped provide me with all of this information to share with people in the community:

  • Seth Block

  • Krista Nightengale

  • Mike Baughman & Union

  • Nick Marino Jr.

  • Communities Foundation of Texas

  • United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

  • Amber Scheurer

  • Carol Goglia


If you know of other opportunities for people to help out, please let me know via email or by commenting on this post. I will update this list as I learn about new opportunities.

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