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How to help in these unprecedented times


It’s already become a bit of a gag (you have to have a laugh in times like this, right?)… how many times have you heard the word “unprecedented” recently? As in, “these are unprecedented times.”

But the reason that this word has been so (over)used is that it’s accurate—these truly are unprecedented times. Our entire world has changed dramatically, almost overnight. There is almost no one alive on Earth who has seen a similar situation.

While many of us in the tech industry are self-isolating and working from home, we would still like to help our colleagues, community members, and neighbours who have lost their jobs, seen their hours reduced, or simply do not have the resources to weather this storm.

Calgary has proven its generosity time and time again. Our ability to pull together and help each other during difficult times is legendary—and these are exceptionally difficult times.

So what can you do to help?

Pick up a volunteer shift at the Calgary Food Bank.

Demand at the Calgary Food Bank is way up and they need (healthy) volunteers.

They are looking to fill the following shifts: Monday to Friday 8-11am, 11am-2pm, 2-5pm and 5-8pm.

If you are able to volunteer, please visit their website for information about how to sign up.

To comply with AHS restrictions and for everyone’s safety, seniors and those with pre-existing health conditions are requested to sit this one out.

Everyone is asked to complete Alberta Health Services’ COVID-19 online screening tool prior to committing to a volunteer shift.

Make a personal or corporate donation.

As we all know by now, the Calgary Food Bank can turn a $1 donation into $5 worth of food, and they have never needed support like they do right now.

This year’s YYC Tech Gives donation page is up and running. All donations made through this page go straight to the Calgary Food Bank.

You can even set up a company team or a team of friends if you would like to encourage group giving: https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/calgary-inter-faith-food-bank/p2p/yyctech2020/

Donate food.

Next time you are at the grocery store (practicing safe shopping and social distancing habits), buy an extra item or two and leave them in the Food Bank collection box. These boxes are still being collected regularly at this time.

Their most needed items for March are canned fruit, canned tomatoes, Kraft Dinner and canned soups. You can check out their complete wish list here.

Brighten someone’s day.

Decorate your neighbourhood with sidewalk chalk, post pretty pictures in your window, pick up groceries for your home-bound neighbour.

Share your good deeds on social media with #AlbertaCares to spread the sunshine far and wide.

And what do you do in these unprecedented times if you need help yourself?

Call our friends at the Calgary Food Bank at 403.253.2055 to request a food hamper, check out the government resources that are available, and reach out to your neighbours.

Remember, we are all in this together.

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