We found a few ways our community is showing up for one another.

While we all do our best to stay informed, prioritize cleanliness, sanitation and take various other precautions to slow the spread of the pandemic, the situation also calls on us to think about ways we can support those in our community whose situations are more vulnerable and precarious than our own. To that end, we’ve designed this post to capture and share various ways our community members are going about or can go about actively caring and supporting our neighbors.

Note: We would love to update this post with local opportunities and resources you find that we have not included here. You can submit those HERE or at the end of this post.

I. Support Your Local Food Banks

We came across this message from Bret Raymond, co-founder of The Pack Shack in Cave Springs, who highlights this need succinctly.

Good Afternoon – We’ve all been listening to the news with a mixture of curiosity and concern. What can easily get lost in all the reporting is the impact this situation is having on our hungry neighbors. Food banks and pantries are seeing skyrocketing demand, but there are fewer volunteers (elderly people who are wisely staying home). With more and more school closings, kids are missing out on breakfast and lunch. Also, many working people who struggle to make ends meet are having an even harder time right now. The need for meals to feed kids and families is critical.

Pack Shack is inviting people to donate funds that will help them pack meals and get them to local organizations. Each meal is just $0.25. Online donations can be made safely and securely at www.thepackshack.org. For questions, you can reach Bret at 866.FUNNEL4, ext 700.

II. Stock a Little Free Pantry

Many people have noted that this is an excellent opportunity to find and help stock a little free pantry with non-perishable food items and toiletries.

You can find other pantries by visiting http://mapping.littlefreepantry.org/.

There is a running thread of information and volunteers organizing on Facebook HERE.

III. Check on Your Friends, Family and Elderly Neighbors

The situation is overwhelming for many and while social distancing is paramount, the social isolation and anxiety can have profound impacts on our mental well-being. Regularly check-in with friends, family, and elderly neighbors—they may be afraid to ask for help or connection.

IV. Support Local Businesses

We all know the toll on local small businesses that rely on foot traffic has the potential to be devastating, we encourage you to think creatively and do what you can to support local businesses. With local business owners stepping up and doing things like this:

…the least we can do is figure out ways to pay it forward. Here is a post that details a few ways: