The Second Wave of Coronavirus is Coming: How You Can Provide Support During Coronavirus
It's no secret that coronavirus has been hard on all of us. Our businesses, our bank accounts, our community morale...the list goes on and on. And in times like this, it feels easy to want to throw your hands up and turn a blind eye to those in need to fend for yourself.
But, as you all know, that is simply not the way of Kwanza and José. Here at the Kwanza Jones and José E Feliciano Initiative (KJJF), we believe in building a better, more equitable tomorrow. Not only a tomorrow without a global pandemic but even during a pandemic where low-income families aren't food insecure. A tomorrow where all children—no matter their background—have access to education and technology, especially when they're learning from home. A tomorrow where small business owners feel supported and rallied by their community to thrive even with social distancing.
Will You Help Us?
If you truly resonate with this vision, then your answer to this question should be easy. No one ever built a more empowered, more educated, and more equitable tomorrow alone; therefore, we need your help. Not just us, but the 33 million Americans who don't know where their next meal is coming from, especially the children who are no longer receiving free meals at school. There’s also the 9 million students who don't have a laptop or Wi-Fi at home to continue their education remotely. And all of those vulnerable communities don't even begin to include the 100,000+ small businesses that have shut their doors forever due to the pandemic.
So again we ask: will you help us?
Our four pillars here at KJJF are Education, Equity, Entrepreneurship, and Empowerment. One can't exist without the others, so please...pick the pillar you want to commit to below, spread the word, and help us make a tomorrow where America really is great for all.
Create Equal Educational Opportunities
17% of students don't have internet access and/or an internet-accessible device to log onto school and continue learning from home. And because we all know that the start of self-empowerment begins with a strong education, here's how you can help change that:
- Donate to LA Tech Cares: a charity co-founded by our very own Kwanza Jones. She, alongside tech moguls Brett Brewer and Brian Lee, are closing the internet access gap in LA by providing Wi-Fi hotspots to homes in need. Donate now to help them reach their $250,000 goal to build accessible learning opportunities for 13,000 students.
- Give to First Book: an organization dedicated to educating and empowering students from all backgrounds. Thanks to First Book, underprivileged schools and communities are 185 million books richer. If you donate today, your donation will be matched by Pizza Hut, who's also worked with First Book to develop the "Empower Educators" Series—a module that instructs educators on how to effectively teach racism in their classrooms.
Promote Food Equity
In COVID times, not only is unequal access to education plaguing vulnerable communities but also unequal access to food. Here's what you can do to help:
- Find your local food bank, or a food bank in a vulnerable community near you, through Feeding America to donate, volunteer, and/or advocate against legislation that promotes food insecurity in your area.
- Pledge money to provide groceries for kids in need at the Boys & Girls Club of America.
America was built by self-starters and out-of-the-box thinkers. Unfortunately, in the middle of a pandemic, these types of ventures have become more risky than rewarding. Here's how you can support your local entrepreneurs today and moving forward:
- This holiday season, buy from small businesses. Not just gifts/gift cards (which some small business owners attribute to saving their business during the holiday season), but daily essentials like clothing and food too.
- Visit a local business and ask what they need. Offer any services or skills you might have free of charge (i.e. marketing or social media strategy). Wear their apparel around town, or ask them to cater your next office lunch. Whatever you do, your dollar and support during coronavirus mean so much more to them than the top 1%.
Health and Safety Empowerment
Our last KJJF pillar is not one that should be ignored or glazed over. Without self-empowerment, how can an individual really reach their full potential? Here are some ways you can help vulnerable communities near you feel empowered:
- Have you noticed that blood drives have come to a screeching halt lately? It's not because blood is not needed—quite the opposite actually. It's just because blood drives have unfortunately become a high-risk activity. So instead, schedule an appointment to donate at the nearest Red Cross to you so that you can still empower some of your community's most vulnerable individuals.
- Sometimes money can be the most empowering tool of all. Consider donating to the Center for Disease Control's Emergency Response Team or the Center for Disaster Philanthropy who are actively providing support to vulnerable communities that have been disproportionately affected during coronavirus.
- Much of healthcare has shifted online, which can be an obstacle to our already vulnerable elderly population. Consider checking in on your local elders; see if they need transportation to regular doctors' appointments or assistance in setting up telehealth check-ups and check-ins.
- Perhaps empowering for your own day-to-day life, consider adopting or fostering a pet at your local animal shelter as they become overcrowded, or donate to a pet food bank through the Humane Society for those pets residing in vulnerable homes.
Thanks For Making A Difference
At KJJF we are more than just dreamers, we're doers. So thank you for seizing the day and doing your part to help vulnerable communities during coronavirus. We can build together, take action together, and in the words of our very own Billboard ranking artist Kwanza Jones, "empower our future community" together.
If you like being surrounded by like-minded helpers and visionaries, then consider joining the Kwanza Jones Boost Friends community: a group of entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, solopreneurs, and game-changers to gain support from and lean on 24/7.
We can't make this world a better place alone...thanks for your support.
Until next time,
The KJJF Team
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