With things changing daily, sometimes hourly, it’s easy to feel nervous, frightened, or just plain overwhelmed right now.

I know I have certainly felt all of these things as schools, businesses, and services continue to shut down and the coronavirus continues to spread. Although I am not worried about the health of myself or my family, I do worry about the health of people who are at risk – people with pre-existing health conditions, people who are homeless or living below the poverty line, elderly people, and anyone who needs to access emergency services at a time when they may be less available.

How you can help those most in need during the Covid-19 pandemic

As I write this, I am mostly quarantined in my house with my kids, I have spent some time thinking about how I can offer some extra help to those who most need it right now. This is one way I can keep my sanity and prevent that feeling of helplessness from overtaking me every time a new change happens. So in addition to extra self-care measures that I have been taking, here are 5 things I am doing to help others who may be in need at this time:

Donate blood for Covid-19 patients

I broke my quarantine to go and donate blood yesterday. Since I am a universal donor, and I heard that their numbers were down, I thought it was a worthwhile reason to leave the house. I will say, if you decide to go and donate, the Blood Services are taking all precautions to keep people safe. There is a person sterilizing all surfaces as soon as they are touched, you cannot come inside until you answer a series of questions, and social distances are being well maintained.  I felt very comfortable being there, and was glad to have been able to donate.

Participate in a Covid-19 fundraiser

We, at True Potential, have decided to do a fundraiser on Facebook in order to raise money for a the Saskatoon Friendship Inn that provides meals and other programs with at-risk people. We realize that this is time of financial uncertainty for many, so we ask that if you are able, consider making a donation, however large or small, to support our efforts.  These programs need support more than ever at this time, so if it’s within your means to give, please do. All the docs at our clinic will be donating to kick things off. Please consider donating to our fundraiser! You can find the campaign pinned to the top of our Facebook Page.

Donate your extra food to Covid-19 at-risk folks

I went through my freezer and cupboards and took out one of all the things I had multiples of.  This included ground turkey, canned tomatoes, and pasta, among other things. I will be contacting The Lighthouse Supported Living facility this week to see how I can safely get these items to them, so they can continue to feed the people they serve.

Support the Food Bank for those who are in need due to Covid-19

Every time I go to the grocery store to buy groceries (I’m aiming for once a week right now) I buy something to put in the food bank bin. I usually do this anyway, but I’ve upped my contribution since this all started. Most grocery stores have prepackaged bags you can purchase, but if not, go with the essentials – formula, canned soup, box meals, etc.

Connect with your community

I have put the word out to friends and family that I am happy to help out if they need anything and are not comfortable leaving their homes.

This is a time upheaval and unprecedented change, and it may be our new normal for the next while. As I navigate the changes and all the feelings these changes bring, I am heartened the most by how people are coming together to support one another.  In a time like this there is nothing more important than putting aside differences and working together to ensure everyone is fed, sheltered, and safe, no matter their life situation.  We will get through this together.

By Dr. Michelle Marcoux, ND

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