It’s the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, it may feel like there’s not much to do.
But now is a great time to reach out to one another.
Do you know the people who live on your block or in your apartment building? If you don’t, put a note on their door with your name and phone number. Explain that you live next door or down the street. Tell them you want them to feel free to ask for help.
Many people are uncomfortable asking for help. Instead of just saying, “Do you need help?” offer to do something specific for them.
A recent story on nextavenue.org by Barbara Twardowski gave these examples of what you can do:
1. Before you run to the grocery store, drug store or a restaurant to pick up take-out, call and ask your neighbors if they need you to pick up something for them.
2. Volunteer to walk their dog(s).
3. Would it be helpful for them if you put their mail and newspaper beside their front door?
4. Does their yard need maintenance? Ask if they would like you to mow their yard or water their wilting flowers.
5. Do they need assistance putting their trash out or bringing the empty cans back into the garage?
6. If you have extra soap, toilet paper or other staples, leave a care package at your neighbor’s door.
7. If you’re looking for ways to engage your children, have them make cards and crafts for the neighbors. Just to be safe, place items in a zipped bag with instructions to wait seven days to open, for germ prevention.
8. Go online and join your neighborhood group to communicate with those who live nearby. Websites like Nextdoor already exist or you can create a private group on Facebook. Just remember, many of your neighbors might not use social media. Some people don’t text. Find out how your neighbor prefers to be contacted.
9. Even if your neighbors say they don’t need help, continue to offer. Accepting assistance from a stranger can feel awkward.
Your neighborly acts of kindness can make a difference in someone else’s life.