As we navigate these first weeks of the pandemic, so many of us who are used to living beyond the four walls of our apartments are now homebound, and those of us who rely on the contact of visitors feel increasingly isolated. Whether you need help with errands or transportation, or you want to link up with a phone buddy for ongoing conversation, CRS is here for you. Please fill out this form to request assistance from the dozens of volunteers who are eager to help and connect with you. We will reach out to match anyone who needs assistance with CRS volunteers.
If you will need financial assistance, the Hebrew Free Loan Society is offering zero-interest loans to help New Yorkers who are impacted financially by the virus. Click here to see the flyer and find out more.
During the pandemic, many people’s employment and financial viability will suffer. Even if you’re not personally affected by this, chances are you know someone who is. Educational Alliance is offering career and other kinds of assistance to New Yorkers by providing counselors, workshops, and other information.
Finally, faith leaders around New York City are partnering with Lincoln Center to produce a weekly community remembrance on Sundays to honor and celebrate those we lost to COVID-19. To view the memorials, and/or submit a name of a loved one, friend, or neighbor, click here.
The CRS Food Drive, in partnership with the West Side Campaign Against Hunger, has been helping to feed our community since 1981. During the coronavirus crisis, WSCAH has doubled the amount of food they distribute each week, and their work cannot be sustained without our help. To get involved, make an online donation to the CRS Food Drive and we will quickly pass along the funds to WSCAH. Your contribution will make a difference for our neighbors in need. Thank you!
For more information on the types of services provided by WSCAH, check out this video:
West Side Campaign Against Hunger (WSCAH) serves 22,000 hungry New Yorkers every year, distributes 1.6 million pounds of healthy food, and connects people to essential benefits for themselves and their families. During this uncertain time, WSCAH will continue to serve as a reliable resource for healthy food and supportive services such as food stamps and unemployment benefits to all New Yorkers in need. Supporting our local food bank is crucial amid the unpredictable COVID-19 health crisis and possible shortages of food and/or challenges for families with children eligible for free or reduced-price school lunch who are now eating at home.
DOROT, based on the Upper West Side, enhances the lives of older adults and provides connection between generations by creating partnerships between volunteers and seniors. While DOROT has put a hold on public programming with seniors, they are continuing with home-based services and require financial support to continue providing crucial services for the elderly, who may be at higher risk for complications from COVID-19.
Metropolitan Council on Housing is a tenants’ rights organization based on advocacy and mutual aid. They are currently looking for volunteers for their Tenant’s Rights’ Telephone Hotline and need financial support to advocate on behalf of tenants dealing with housing challenges as a result of the health crisis.
Backpack Buddies: Under normal circumstances, a dedicated group of congregants packs backpacks every Wednesday with non-perishable foods for students who receive free meals at school to bring home for meals over the weekends. Since we are no longer able to pack backpacks, we are contributing the same amount directly to PS 347 so they can purchase food for the students. Please consider supporting these efforts by contributing to CRS’s Backpack Buddies Fund and we will pass along the donations to PS 347.
Invisible Hands: Invisible Hands is a brand-new project that is connecting volunteers from groups at low risk for COVID-19 complications to deliver groceries and supplies to people of high-risk demographics. Please consider signing up to volunteer and/or providing financial support.
Citymeals on Wheels: Citymeals on Wheels provides nourishing meals and vital companionship to the homebound elderly in NYC. Currently, Citymeals is preparing 300,000 meals to be delivered to more than 18,000 homebound seniors. They are working to guarantee a continuous lifeline of meals for all homebound elderly people in need during this challenging time, especially since senior centers have closed.
City Harvest: Every year, City Harvest rescues over 60 million pounds of food and delivers it, free of charge, to hundreds of food pantries, soup kitchens and other community partners across the five boroughs. Right now, they are focusing on repacking thousands of pounds of food into family-sized portions to be distributed across NYC. Additionally, they are rescuing food from restaurants that have had to close down.
Feed the Frontlines NYC: Created by the owners of Tarallucci e Vino, a restaurant around the corner from CRS, Feed the Frontlines is creating opportunities for restaurant employees to prepare and distribute free meals for healthcare workers across NYC. By purchasing meals through this initiative, you can support local businesses and provide meals for healthcare workers on the front lines.
New York Blood Center: New York Blood Center is one of the largest community-based blood centers in the US and one of the most comprehensive blood centers in the world. Because of concerns about COVID-19, New York Blood Center is running critically low on platelet donations, which may be needed for treatment. Please consider donating blood, platelets, or your dollars to support their efforts.
New Jewish Home: The New Jewish Home, a rehab center and nursing home on the Upper West Side, is experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19 among residents and is in desperate need of protective equipment and other supplies. Click here for more information on what supplies are needed and how to donate.
HIAS: HIAS is a refugee-advocacy organization with Jewish roots, and CRS works with HIAS on our refugee resettlement efforts. Due to crowded living conditions, lack of access to health care, and other issues, refugees are especially vulnerable to contracting COVID-19. HIAS is working hard to minimize spread of the virus among refugee communities by providing information about the illness, health care rights, and available services.
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Share your recipe or ‘thing to do’ with us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.