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The COVID pandemic has affected everyone across the nation, from the largest cities to the smallest towns.[1] People are struggling with employment, schooling, and even the ability to buy essentials. In times like these helping your community is even more crucial.

If you are looking for ways to serve your community during the pandemic, below are a few ideas worth considering.

Buy Gift Cards from Local Businesses

Capacity restrictions, shutdowns, and revenue decreases are affecting almost every type of business in local communities. One way that you can help support them now is by buying gift cards, either for yourself or to give to others. The businesses from which you buy the cards will not only benefit from the boost in revenue, but it will also show your commitment to patronize them when they are back up to full functioning capacity.

Consider Takeout for Dinner One industry hit the hardest across all communities is the restaurant industry.[2] Some restrictions have led to in-person dining bans while others have severely limited the capacity that a restaurant may serve.[3] One way to support your local restaurants and continue to stay safe at home is by ordering take out for dinner. For many restaurants, take-out dining is what is sustaining them throughout this trying time.

Volunteer Your Services at a Food Bank

The loss of jobs and the continuation of remote learning for many schools has resulted in a series of needs in many communities. Food banks and distribution centers are working at full speed to ensure that students who depended on school meals, and other families struggling to put food on the table will have enough to eat.[4] You may help these organizations by volunteering some of your time each week so that the process can be quicker and more efficient.

Check-in on Friends, Neighbors, and Loved Ones

Stay in touch with neighbors, family, and friends who may need assistance during this time, even if it is just emotional. Offer to run errands for them, have food sent over, or just call regularly to enjoy a friendly chat to keep their spirits up.

Helping your community during these uncertain times could be easier than you think. Start by trying one or more of the items listed above, and you might be able to make a truly positive impact. To get through this pandemic, strength in the community will be essential.