Now, more than ever, families, friends and neighbors in communities everywhere are looking out for one another. They are finding smart, creative ways to stay connected, lend a helping hand and make a difference, while staying safe.
Whether it’s offering supplies to those in need, supporting a local business, or just checking in to make sure someone is okay, we’ve seen neighborhoods everywhere come together in this time of need.
Staying Safe Doesn’t Have to Mean Losing Touch
Cade from Santa Clarita, California has always been very close with his grandparents who live about 20 minutes away.
"I used to go down and see them many times a week," Cade said, "but now … I only get to see them at most once a week when I am dropping off groceries.”
Despite that, Cade still speaks to his 92-year-old grandfather via their Ring Video Doorbell "every morning when he goes out to get the newspaper in the driveway," Cade said.
“Our convos are me making sure that my grandparents are [okay], stocked up on groceries, and don't need any more necessities.”
With Ring, Cade and his beloved grandparents feel safe and connected. “I know that I can always hop on my app and make sure everything is running smoothly, versus me having to go down there,” Cade said.
Neighbors Use Technology to Support and Help Each Other
It’s times like these when people are the most generous and with the help of technology, even while staying home, communities are coming together to be there for one another.
A couple in Thornton, Colorado have been tirelessly sewing face masks for anybody who needs one in their neighborhood. They posted on Neighbors: “A group of us is gathering supplies and making face masks for the community if you are in need or have a small business in need,” letting their neighbors know that they can help.
It’s truly a team effort – Gerri cuts the fabric and her husband, Dale, sews. In three weeks the pair made 130 masks. “Not bad for a 71-year-old man who has never used a sewing machine,” Gerri said. They pack the masks in plastic bags, leave them out on their front porch and let people who requested them know that they can come and pick them up. “Our community [being] in need was enough to make us post masks for free, because we are all in this together,” Gerri said.
Tiffany in Ontario, California posted on Neighbors a big-hearted offer: “If you are unable to get out of your house due to your age or compromised immune system, my husband and I would be happy to help and try to get out to stores for you,” her post read. She hoped that her gesture would cause a “ripple effect,” and motivate the community to help others. And it did.
The response of support was overwhelming. “We only had one family request supplies, but we actually had multiple neighbors offer [to] help out! We had one family donate a flat of water, another family offer[ed] some canned goods, and several people offered to assist us in any way they could if we were overwhelmed by requests,” Tiffany said. “It was refreshing to see people coming together in the best way and it was such a happy change from what we have seen on the news lately.”
Neighbors Do What They Can to Support Local Businesses
Local businesses are the backbone of our communities and they are often run by our neighbors - people just like you. Right now especially, neighborhood businesses are in need of support and people across the country do what is within their means to help out.
Through the Neighbor Pledge, people in neighborhoods across the country have chipped in with what they can, many committing to support restaurants and delis by ordering takeout and leaving larger-than-normal tips.
A neighbor in the New York City area decided to help their local bakery and smaller stores by ordering takeout three times a week. “It's our hope they can weather this and still be there when this is over. They need us if you can afford to help,” they posted in a comment on Neighbors.
Another good samaritan in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area rode around and “purchased gift cards and certificates for fast food and other area businesses” in hopes to “help save a job or two,” they commented on Neighbors.
And in Miami, Florida one resident encouraged the community to give a bigger tip to the waiters and staff when picking up takeout or getting food delivered because they “can use the extra money to make up for the lack of business,” wrote the neighbor.
It’s not just about supporting the neighborhood businesses, communities are rallying for local independent service providers as well.
The owner of a small mobile pet grooming company in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area posted on Neighbors that she couldn’t wait to get back to work. Many of her neighbors reassured her that they will use her services to help out as soon as it is possible.
Several clients of a mobile nail service in the Chicago, Illinois area have reached out to the owner and paid for the services as though they were still receiving them. “I was beyond grateful for them,” the service owner wrote in a comment on Neighbors, “we all will get through this together! Much love everyone! Stay well and safe!”
These acts of kindness are just a few examples of people coming together and having each other’s backs by doing what they can to help right now. From continuing to support a local business, to picking up some groceries for an elderly neighbor, families, friends and neighbors are showing time and time again that staying connected helps make our communities stronger.
Update: As of September 1, 2020 the Neighbor Pledge has been discontinued.