15 Ways to Serve Others Right Now as Rotarians, Servant Leaders, and Just Good-Hearted People

Finding the Good

When things get crazy, and I think we can all agree the past 7 days qualifies as crazy, we tend to pull inward. Thinking first of our family, ourselves, and our preparations- and rightfully so! But now, most of us are home thinking of ways to best use these days and weeks in ways that are productive and beneficial. Sitting with our stockpiled toilet paper wondering, what now?

We are still part of our communities, still committed to serving others, and still craving human connection. There are ways to stay involved and make an impact. We can help others by addressing the ultra-timely needs of loneliness or lacking resources. It just takes a little bit of creativity.

  1. Text or call your friends and family- a simple ‘hey, how are you?’ can brighten anyone’s day! Let them know you are there to support them and talk. We certainly have time!
  2. Send a funny meme or an old picture. Humor is so powerful! Download the Giphy app and enjoy.
  3. Video chat- this is especially important right now. We need human interaction.
  4. Make a funny or inspirational video. Send it to others, post it to social media, heck, send it to me! Brighten someone’s day.
  5. Send an e-card, JibJab is hysterical. A friend of mine sends one every Christmas and I love it because it makes me slow down amid the crazy of holiday preparation and just enjoy it. We could all use a silly distraction right now.
  6. Clean out your closet. Donate to the local homeless shelter. Many churches have collections bins outside that require zero contact.
  7. Make cards and mail them to local senior care homes. Many, if not all, of these facilities are not receiving visitors and days can get very lonely.
  8. Write a letter to an old friend. Remember pens and paper? Envelopes? Stamps? These still exist! How great would you feel if you opened up the mailbox to an actual letter from an actual human NOT trying to sell you something? 
  9. Check on your neighbors. Many of the elderly are afraid to go out and get groceries and medications right now. If you are running out for milk and bread- see if you can drop some off for them as well.
  10. When you’ve finished with your reading list, consider dropping some books off at a Little Free Library. These are stand alone book drops with no interaction with others.
  11. If you have the financial means, contribute. Many smaller charities are taking a big hit right now and the businesses that support them are stressed as well. This is a time to share our resources with one another.
  12. Support local businesses. Order online or buy a gift card. Cash flow is a huge issue as their overhead doesn’t usually change in times like this.
  13. Take care of YOUR mental health. Many counselors offer online therapy, and most insurance does cover this now. Talkspace has also created a free online support group on Facebook for this crisis. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, you won’t be able to help those around you. You can’t pour from an empty cup.
  14. Educate yourself to be a better servant of others and know where there is need. Read books or take online courses- many of which have been made free during this time. Watch a documentary.
  15. Make plans! Start researching community projects that you want to dive into when this crisis ends. There will be better days. Use this time to prepare!

We will come out of this better and stronger! As Rotary says, we are ‘people of action’. If you don’t know what Rotary is or the impact Rotary has across the world, make that part of your internet browsing over the next few weeks. While our actions might change for the time being, our intentions and commitment to service has not.

Stay safe & healthy, take care of yourself, and stay positive 🙂  -Kate