Constant coronavirus news flashes and continued social distancing might have you feeling helpless, but there is still plenty you can do to serve others right now. Here are four ways to give your time, money, and bodily fluids to aid those most affected by COVID-19.

Donate Blood
When social distancing began, groups like the American Red Cross were forced to cancel dozens of blood drives, leaving area hospitals with a debilitating shortage. As of press time, though, the national nonprofit Vitalant—which has six Denver locations—and local health care providers such as Children’s Hospital Colorado were hosting safe-donation sites. Guests are screened over the phone and at the entrance to make sure they don’t have symptoms related to the new coronavirus and kept six feet apart.

Feed The Hungry
Four Denver organizations—Denver Food Rescue, Bondadosa, Lost City, and Focus Points Family Resource Center—combined forces to create the Denver Metro Emergency Food Network. The group delivers free meals to low-income families and to elderly individuals who are avoiding high-density areas. A $25 donation helps the group provide four meals.

Support Local Artists
After hearing about a fund to help struggling artists in Seattle, Merhia Wiese, a community engagement coordinator for Meow Wolf, set up a GoFundMe page to aid Denver creatives who lost paid gigs due to the pandemic. Artists can apply to receive a portion of the donations. Wiese and a team of Mile High City arts supporters will decide how to dole out the funds (more than $10,000 as of press time), prioritizing folks from historically marginalized groups.

Buy From A Colorado Brand That Gives Back
Many local companies are passing profits to COVID-19 relief efforts, meaning you can be altruistic by simply purchasing new gear. For example, Boulder’s EcoVessel, which makes insulated water bottles, will give a portion of sales to retail shops forced to close for a period of time, and for every backpack it sells, Denver’s Adventurist Backpack Co. will donate enough money to pay for 50 meals to Feeding America, a national nonprofit that stocks food banks.

This article was originally published in 5280 May 2020.
Shane Monaghan
Shane Monaghan
Shane Monaghan is the former digital editor of and teaches journalism at Regis Jesuit High School.