I have been wanting to give back to the first responder healthcare heroes so I delivered Delfina pizza today for lunch to a former client who is a nurse and her colleagues at UCSF. They are testing people for the virus. I recommend if you know a healthcare worker who is dealing with COVID-19 patients that you have lunch, dinner or dessert delivered to them and their colleagues.
This week I was part of a Zoom call which was quite uplifting; I think we could use a little uplifting these days! It was a call with a business networking group I belong to called Bay Area Lawyer’s Affinity Group with Provisors https://www.provisors.com/. The discussion topic was how we can give back to the community. Listening in I heard about so much that is being done for neighbors in need.
Some lawyers are giving free legal advice in their specialty areas like landlord/ tenant or immigration law. Others are advising people on how to obtain loans under the CARES Act. Others are helping elderly neighbors buy groceries. One attorney proposed paying people who regularly perform services for you, like gardeners, cleaners, hairdressers, etc., even though you are not receiving any services now. Since these people are generally self-employed, they need income now and are not getting it from the CARES Act yet. Some recommended making donations to the San Francisco/Marin Food Bank which has been inundated by additional requests from people who have lost their jobs. I have been doing some of the above.
Finally, I am Chair of the Committee for the Compass Community Fund at my office at 1699 Van Ness Avenue. Agents who are members of this fund (about half of the agents in my office) donate a certain amount of money from their commission checks for each transaction in a given year. At the end of the year, my committee divvies up the fund among 16 SF non-profits related to housing which care for neighbors in need. This past year we collected about $65,000 and sent checks out in March, just as this virus was taking its toll. These nonprofits were happy to receive the money, considering most will not be having any fundraisers this year. If you have a favorite non-profit, this is the time to give.
It is reassuring to see the community come together for people in need. Reaching out during this time not only helps others but helps yourself.