If you are looking for a way to volunteer or otherwise give back to our community, healthcare workers and others, this is the place for you. Below is a list of organizations and activities working hard to support those in need as well as local businesses and frontline workers.
It does not have to be complicated or costly.
Call and offer support to someone who is elderly, suffers from chronic illness, lives alone, is immuno-compromised, has a job that is in jeopardy, has young children at home, or just might appreciate a friendly hello. Don’t know anyone personally who fits these categories, but still want to help? Email Rabbi Klein to be connected to TSTI members who might appreciate some outreach.
Shop local by ordering take-out or delivery from a favorite restaurant or sending a book or some flowers to someone you love (maybe to yourself!) from a local shop! Before you place that online order or head to a big box store, pause and consider if you might be able to get what you need from a local small business. Many local stores are owned by members of TSTI and need our support. Check these links to find out what’s open in South Orange, and Maplewood, and let us know if you know of similar links for neighboring towns!
Below are more ways to help. Please help us keep this list current, by letting us know about other intiatives people can look into.
The Isaiah House Homeless Shelter and Food Pantry's mission is to reduce the homelessness, hunger and unemployment throughout Essex County and more specifically, within the Oranges and Newark. Isaiah House is the only homeless shelter in East Orange and provides temporary and permanent lodging, food, social and financial services, as well as comfort and hope for families and individuals every year. They are in need of both financial support and donations of specific items in order to continue their important work throughout the duration of this crisis.
Stay in touch with isolated Senior Adults. Have some time and feel like lifting the spirits of an isolated senior adult? Village Apartments of the Federation on Vose Avenue in South Orange will take email notes to be distributed to residents. Please send your letters and notes in a word or pdf attachment to Tracy Horwitz so we can send them in bulk.
Opportunities to donate blood. The New York Blood Center is accepting donations from people who have recovered from COVID-19 as well as regular donations. Both are extremely important right now! You don't have to go to New York to help. The New York Blood Center has a donation center in New Brunswick and other NJ locations. If you have recovered from the virus, take this Donor Survey to see if you are eligible.
You can also donate blood through Atlantic Health Systems, or the Red Cross, which is safe to do. Blood banks are low on supply due to the coronavirus emergency, and lots of blood drives have been canceled due to closed facilities. So you need to check their links to find the most recent information. AND, if you are recovered from coronavirus, your blood is especially needed for plasma, because it has antibodies and may prove helpful to people with severe cases. Find out how to donate here. You can also donate much needed blood specifically to sickle cell patients.
Click here for more information about ongoing service opportunities.