How to Support Your Local Businesses and Charities
The global COVID-19 pandemic has created difficult times for communities around the world. Local businesses and charities have had to close or adapt to a new normal, resulting in financial hardship and loss. Now more than ever it’s important to support your local organizations. Local businesses and charities play a critical role as pillars of your community and serve as support for you and your neighbors.
Make an impact on your community members by helping your local businesses and nonprofits navigate through these uncertain times. Every purchase, donation, and contribution you make counts.
How to Support Local Businesses and Services
Your local restaurants, stores, barbers, hairstylists, and so many more struggle to make ends meet while the pandemic continues. The people behind these businesses and services are often your neighbors, friends, and family. Here are a few ideas you can safely participate in to support your community:
Many restaurants are operating on takeout-only service due to safety restrictions. Consider choosing one night each week to be takeout night with your family to support your favorite local spots.
Buy Gift Cards
Not big on takeout? Gift cards are a great alternative because you’ll be ready to go to your favorite restaurants when they reopen for in-person dining but they can still provide them supportive income now. Some salons and barbers offer gift cards so that you can redeem at a later time when it is safe to do so. Other local businesses and services may offer gift certificates as well, ideal for when you’re not ready to purchase from them now but know you will in the future.
Are some of your local businesses moving to online options? Workout classes, cooking classes, local groups that normally gather to network or mentor, musicians, and more are increasingly going virtual. Share information on your favorite businesses, classes, and creators with your social circles and show your support by purchasing tickets to their virtual events. Attending these online events will help bring local awareness and income to people working to adapt to the challenges from COVID-19 and will encourage your neighbors in these strenuous times.
Write a Review
Many businesses rely on review sites to draw in new customers. The more positive reviews they have, the easier it is for people to discover new and exciting businesses. It only takes a few minutes for you to write a review, and it makes a big difference for the business. If you’re thinking about writing a negative review, reconsider whether your experience was truly bad and worth publicizing as even one negative review can seriously damage a business’s reputation.
How to Support Local Charities
It’s been a tough year for nonprofit organizations, many of which have had to cancel their in-person events and switch to virtual options. They’re also facing increasing demand from their clients, as more individuals lose their livelihoods and need assistance. This means fewer donations coming in and not enough volunteers to handle the workload. That’s why it’s crucial to find new ways to be charitable during the pandemic. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Offer Your Skills
Do you have marketing, writing, fundraising, or other relevant skills that could help a local nonprofit? Reach out to them directly to offer your time, even if it’s just for a short-term project. This also applies if you’re a crafty person: could you make face masks to give to a local hospital? Is there an art piece you could create and donate to a charity to auction off?
Donate Your Commute
With many of us working virtually, we’re saving a considerable amount of money on not commuting right now. Calculate how much you’ve saved so far, and donate it to your favorite local charity, or take that monthly amount and donate it to different charities and non-profits.
Focus on Charities Helping Families
If you want to make a difference with people impacted by COVID-19 specifically, support charities that are helping families in your community. Many adults are out of work and struggling financially, ending up in food lines or without a roof over their heads. Donating your time or money can make a major impact on their quality of life.
Promote on Social Media
Local nonprofits often face hurdles with advertising their cause due to limited resources. If you volunteer with a great organization, don’t be afraid to give them a shoutout on social media when they have an upcoming fundraiser or are doing great work for the community. Even if you’re not a volunteer, celebrate organizations that impact your community by publicly sharing their successes to drive more donations and awareness.
Tell us: How have you been helping your local community lately?