Supporting Others Who are Vulnerable during COVID-19
We know that many City employees are looking for ways to support people who are vulnerable in our communities. The following actions represent a range of ways people can lend their support. City employees are encouraged to provide support in a way that best aligns with your comfort and capability.
Please take all necessary safety precautions to protect your well-being and refer to the appropriate safety measures if you are volunteering within the community or helping others during this time. Please also note that this not an email encouraging you to work in the community during work hours as you are teleworking and does not count as work time and this email is merely provided as information from fellow City staff to City staff.
PDX Covid-19 Mutual Aid Network is an all-volunteer grassroots group operating in the territories of the many tribes who have made their homes near the confluence of the Willamette and the Columbia Rivers, including Multnomah, Wasco, Cowlitz, Kathlamet, Clackamas, Bands of Chinook, Tualatin, Kalapuya, and Molalla. This group has posted a request form to assist folx in need prioritizing those who are sick, unhoused, disabled, quarantined without pay, elderly, undocumented, trans and queer, Black, Indigenous, People of Color, including immigrants, refugees, and those who have been displaced from Portland to nearby areas. To offer your support, you can fill out this form to volunteer.
Congressman Earl Blumenauer has put together this very comprehensive Google Spreadsheet of COVID-19 Emergency Relief Resources for PDX (and Beyond)!
Street Roots vendors have created the Street Roots Coronavirus Action Team, who go out each day to deliver health supplies and accurate public health information to other people who are unhoused. Consider donating here: https://secure.qgiv.com/for/vif/ to help them continue this effort.
Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO) expects businesses across the region to be severely impacted in the upcoming weeks, but specifically, Asian-owned businesses have been impacted since January as a result of fear and xenophobia. Many working in the Jade District have had their hours cut or been laid off despite business owners’ best efforts to keep staff on. The vast majority of those impacted are low income immigrants. A few ways to help:
- Donate to the Jade District Covid Relief Fund for impacted workers at Jade District small businesses, who have been experiencing reduced hours and layoffs for many weeks. Help community members with immediate needs that can’t wait for other relief to become available.
- Volunteer to help our Jade District neighbors who can’t leave their homes during this time - deliver groceries, pick up supplies, and more. (Or submit a request for help for you or a loved one in the Jade District!) Through mutual aid and support, we can fill the gaps and help our neighbors.
- Support local businesses, and recognizing that Asian-owned restaurants are particularly impacted, consider ordering delivery.
- Talk to one another! Many of us have friends or family members who may not have access to the internet or be able to read resources in English. Make sure you’re checking on them, so they know the best ways to follow good health practices too! For some, you may be their only way to get connected to good information, like these in-language materials about COVID-19
The Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA) has a great community resource page for Covid-19 updates, food and meal services, childcare services, mental health services, etc. that is being continually updated. Although NAYA’s building is closed until April 13 (at this time), this worthy community organization that serves over 10,000 people each year in the Native American Community in the Portland area receives donations online.
Other Native Resources:
Urban Indian Health Institute Covid-19 Factsheets
Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Institute
The Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO) serves the holistic needs of immigrants, refugees, and mainstream community members in Oregon and SW Washington. As a community-based organization, we empower children, youth, families and elders from around the world to build new lives and become self-sufficient by providing more than 200 culturally and linguistically specific social services.
IRCO needs your support. More than 35,000 people rely on us each year, and in times of crisis like this, that number grows. The effects of COVID-19 on our community disproportionately impact the people IRCO serves—people with limited English language skills, families with low incomes, individuals with chronic health disparities, elders, and those who cannot easily access internet and digital devices. Our job placements are in industries being hit hard by COVID-19, like food service, hospitality, health care and airports. As schools close, our families are left without childcare and are forced to miss work. Most of our newcomers do not qualify for unemployment because of limited time working in the U.S. Give today.
Latino Network is a Latino-led education organization, grounded in culturally-specific practices and services, that lifts up youth and families to reach their full potential. Our work springs from the core belief in Latino community self-determination—that is, the ability of community members to participate meaningfully in the decisions that affect their lives and the lives of their families. They also have an excellent community resource page during the Covid-19 crisis that includes food services, health centers, etc. To donate to Latino Network, go online to the webpage here.
At Voz, they serve the most vulnerable and marginalized of workers: older adults, seniors, immigrants and refugees, houseless, and those living with chronic illnesses. Day laborers work in temporary low-wage jobs where they do not have access to sick leave and cannot work remotely. As the COVID-19 pandemic intensifies, they are setting up a preparedness plan that combines education, individual and collective preparedness planning, and access to direct services (including an emergency solidarity fund to ensure worker access to medical care, sick leave, good hygiene, mental health, housing, and food security.) VOZ’s Emergency Solidarity Fund for Day Laborer Workers.
Call to Safety, formerly Portland Women's Crisis Line. Everyone deserves a life free from domestic and sexual violence.