Finding simple sources of comfort and ways to help have become standard orders of the day during COVID-19. These include things like finding the helpers (and being the helpers), giving of ourselves (and gift cards when we can) and staying safe (more to the point, staying home). Perhaps the silver lining to this incredibly challenging time will be a collective, newfound focus on resilience, solidarity and ingenuity. Remaining united and surfacing our unshakeable human spirit may well be the gifts that keep giving long after the health, social and economic pressures of COVID-19 have subsided.
Helping Families and Communities Survive and Thrive
The sage advice from Mr. Rogers, famed children’s television personality, would have us look for the helpers. It’s easy to find them. Just look for the drive-by parades through parking lots of nursing homes and assisted living facilities. The outpouring of love, thanks and recognition to our homebound elders are amazing gifts, indeed.
Gift Cards Can Help You Make a Difference Today
If you’re searching for a way to give an affordable, meaningful gift to someone that can really use it, here are a few ideas to consider:
- Donate meals from local restaurants to feed healthcare workers through take-out or delivery services. The restaurant and your local economy will benefit, too. Here are a few restaurants to choose from (more at eGifter.com): Applebee’s gift cards, Outback gift cards (or any Bloomin’ Brand), Boston Market gift cards, Chili’s Bar and Grill gift cards, Doordash gift cards, Ruby Tuesday gift cards, Jersey Mike’s Subs gift cards, TGIFridays gift cards, or Uber Eats gift cards
- Find a local blood drive and donate much needed blood or platelets (search Red Cross locations)
- Drop off food at your local food pantry. If you can’t get there personally or want to contribute to a food donation center at a distant location, you can easily deliver groceries by sending them a Target gift card or Walmart gift card
- Encourage your local Chamber of Commerce to claim their FREE listing at OperationMainStreet.com. Doing so can have a dramatically positive impact on helping your local business community and their employees survive the economic downturn of COVID-19
- Send a gift card to purchase a vegetable garden — deliver the gift card by text or email . With both online and in-store redemption, Home Depot gift cards and Lowe’s gift cards let them purchase seeds and starter plants for vegetables and fruit that can actually feed a family
- Help them to help others! Donate fabric for masks by sending Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores gift card to the crafty people you know. The shortfall of masks for local businesses and healthcare locations can be built up with this grassroots effort.
- Call the seniors and singles in your life just to say hello. It may be the only friendly, personal voice they hear today.
Long live compassion and perseverance — the hidden gifts that have emerged from this historically significant time.
Please share your own story of optimism, healing and the human spirit.
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