The world is hurting right now. Maybe COVID-19 has not hit your area yet and you are going about your daily life still. I was too, up until the past week or so. I live in Upstate New York, and we are under a stay-at-home order. While staying at home is a relief, I will admit that I am also completely terrified. I am scared not only for me, my family, and my friends, but also for the world. Life will never be the same again after this.
Someone on the radio recently said that the coronavirus is this generation’s 9/11. Let me tell you right now, I was in New York City on September 11, 2001. I was 22 years old. This is nothing like 911. This is worse.
In the middle of the pain, we are seeing acts of kindness. They are small, but they serve to instill hope in the world that humans may be an okay link on the food chain after all.
In NYS, there is mass unemployment that has now surpassed recession levels and is escalating at a level we have not seen since the Great Depression. It sure looks like history repeats itself every 100 years, doesn’t it?
I am extremely fortunate that I still have a job. I am still getting paid. It is extremely tenuous how long that will last. I work at a very small, local non-profit that employs about 10 staff. I am scared of losing my job and not being able to pay the bills. I completely understand why people were jumping off of buildings in 1929. I am very fortunate in that I have three furballs depending on me to keep me grounded and sane.
In this very scary time, we don’t have a dime to give. I get it. I really do.
But I am still going to issue the Five Dollar Challenge.
As I said, I work at a tiny non-profit that has about 10 staff. If every person in America right now were to donate $5 to a local non-profit, it may mean the difference between that agency being able to give their employees just one more paycheck.
No one has money right now. I get it. But $5 is not much. Hey, we are under a stay-at-home order. It’s not like you can go to a coffee shop right now. Take that $5 you would have spent on a latte and donate it to a local non-profit in your area.
Local money stays local. Help your neighbors. You do not even have to leave your home.
Even with all businesses in NYS mandated closed, many are working remotely. So if you don’t know how to give, call one of your local non-profits and ask if they have a way to donate online or if you can mail a check.
Don’t forget your local animal shelters. Animal shelters are still open and caring for homeless pets right now. In fact, if you are under a stay-at-home order, this is the perfect time to adopt and get a new family member acclimated to your home. Call the shelter ahead to ask how they are handling adoptions during this trying time.
As much as we are all buying toilet paper and cleaning supplies right now, remember that shelters need those items every single day. If you are ordering supplies online, try to place an order for the shelter too.
I get how hard it is to donate right now. But we all have $5. We are only going to get through this by working together. Given that I am one of a few very privileged people to still be employed right now, I am going to give $5 to a local non-profit every single time I am able to get paid. I am going to take the dime I do have and make it scream.
I will totally admit that I did give $5 today, but I did not give to a local agency. I donated $5 to my favorite radio show. They are worth way more than $5. I would give $5,000 if I could. I wanted to show them that I appreciate them still being on the air and providing me with a distraction from the stress of the news. But from here on out, I will give my $5 to a local non-profit agency within 10 miles of my home only.
We are all stuck at home and ordering things online. Amazon is very popular. Well, have you ever heard of Amazon Smile? Amazon Smile is a completely different web site from the regular Amazon. You have to type in Amazon Smile. You can use your Amazon account to choose a non-profit. Every time you buy something from Amazon, they donate a portion of your purchase to your chosen non-profit.
Local non-profits are on Amazon Smile. In fact, I just switched my Amazon Smile account for the donation money to go to my employer. I’m happy they are still paying me. Non-profits need our help now more than ever.
If you are stuck at home and looking for something to do or a way to help, google non-profits in your town. Keeping your $5 donation local helps to be sure that someone can get one more paycheck to provide for their family.
I can promise that when we all come through the other side of this that your local non-profits will pay you back. We provide valuable services to the community. Some agencies may even decide to have a community party when we do not have to isolate or social distance anymore.
$5 may not seem like a lot, but to someone else it can mean the world. If you are still getting a paycheck right now, consider joining the $5 Challenge.
Keep it local. The only way we are going to get through this is together.
Will you join me in donating $5 to a local non-profit in your own community?
Consider Amazon Smile. You are ordering online anyway, so why not have a portion of your purchase go to an agency in your community? Only certified 501C3 non-profits make the list for Amazon Smile, so your money is going to good.
Five dollars, friends. Let’s do this!