“There are safe ways for us to observe the CDC guidelines while finding ways to help our neighbors in need,” said Edly-Allen. “There are so many organizations in our communities that are doing their best to help our neighbors while facing a drop in their normal volunteer pools combined with a drastic increase in demand of their services and the increased challenges presented by social distancing and other safety precautions. There are ways for all of us to give back and help contribute to the cause.”
A list of some available volunteer opportunities are available on the Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service website at Serve.Illinois.gov, including community- based opportunities such as meal-packing at the Northern Illinois Food Bank and ways residents can contribute to COVID-19 efforts from home. The American Red Cross is asking healthy residents to consider donating blood as the country faces a severe blood bank shortage.
Local organizations may also submit their ongoing volunteer activity and needs on a weekly basis through the Serve.Illinois.gov website. The collected data may be used in the future to apply for disaster funding.
Additionally, residents or businesses are asked to check their supplies for any new, unopened personal protective equipment such as N-95 masks, gloves, goggles, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes that can be donated to local fire departments, police departments or hospitals.
“One of the best things about our community is how we come together during times of need to help our neighbors,” Edly-Allen added. “I am endlessly proud of the generosity this community demonstrates every single day. I have seen so many citizens stepping up and volunteering to deliver meals to homebound seniors and disabled residents, sewing masks to donate to our nurses at local hospitals, and neighbors checking in on each other and pitching in to help each other however they can. Those of us who are healthy can find ways to give back in a way that is comfortable and safe for each of us even as we take the social distancing precautions necessary to flatten the curve.”
Visit Rep. Mary Edly-Allen’s website
235-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
1585 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Libertyville, IL 60048