This past week, we saw through the actions and statements of various political leaders, that the COVID-19 crisis will expose our society’s value for profit over people. With the lives of millions potentially on the line, the soul of our nation is being tested, and the integrity of the Church is being challenged.
In these times, more than ever, the Church must honor the image of God in all people, and fight for their dignity, value, and breath, regardless of their background. We must fight against the rise of new eugenicists, and the impulse to value certain lives more than others. We are called to lay down our time, our resources, and our political voice to serve those who are the most vulnerable.
Though it is overwhelming to think of all the needs around us- of the sick, the elderly, health care workers, migrants, the unemployed, small business owners, gigging artists, child care workers, the list goes on and on- I hope that we do not get so paralyzed that we choose to do nothing.
Here is a roundup of some ways you can serve the vulnerable in our communities. This is mostly local to the Eden area (San Leandro/San Lorenzo/Cherryland/Ashland/Castro Valley/Fairview/Hayward), but there are some regional and national resources as well.
OFFER UP YOUR TIME
- Volunteer your time with food services, wellness checks, hygiene kits, and meal delivery via California Volunteers
- Serve the unsheltered via FirstPres Hayward Winter Shelter, which proivides beds for 50 unsheltered neighbors nightly
- Serve the hungry via the South Hayward parish Food Pantry, open daily and doing food deliveries M-F
- Serve disabled folks as an ally through Disability Justice Culture Club
- Donate time and resources to unhoused communities and encampments via Poor Magazine
- Serve the elderly via Tricity Risk, being matched with somebody who needs help with groceries, pharmacy runs, deliveries, check-ins, etc.
- Volunteer with the City of Hayward Emergency Volunteer Center to help manage emergency efforts in these times
OFFER YOUR POLITICAL VOICE
- Take action for nurses and advocate for protective equipment via this petition here
- Sign-on to a petition to prevent COVID19 transmission in the Santa Rita Jail
- Sign this petition to make grocery delivery available for recipients of SNAP/EBT/WIC
- Sign a letter to Governor Newsome asking him to stop the expansion of immigration detention in this time
- Report hate against the AAPI community that you or somebody you know has experienced
- Support at-risk community members in ICE detention using this toolkit here
OFFER MATERIAL RESOURCES
- Donate masks and protective equipment to health care workers through Mask Match
- Donate supplies (disinfectant, wipes, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, etc.) to FirstPres Hayward Winter Shelter: Contact Aaron Horner (aaron [at] firstpreshayward [dot] com
- Donate blood as many blood banks are experiencing shortages, through Red Cross.
- Donate to the CDC Foundation, to support deploying emergency staffing to U.S. public health agencies, funding medical supplies, increasing lab capacity, providing support to vulnerable communities
- Support the Bay Area Senior/Disability mutual aid fund
- Support the LGBTQI+ BIPOC Mutual Aid fund
- Provide emergency relief for undocumented through Undocufund
- Support your local businesses by ordering takeout, buying gift cards, ordering books at local bookstores, etc. You can also buy gift cards here.
- For a list of other mutual aid projects, visit Its Going Down