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#supportduringcorona | How to Support Good Causes in Corona Times – also from Home.

You think volunteering is getting a Mission Impossible during  times of #PhysicalDistancing? No way! In this blog, we show you a whole bunch of ways to do good – also from home. #supportduringcorona 🧡

Plus, through our social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) we also keep you up to date with the latest needs from the NPO world.

Here you can directly navigate to the different Do-Good categories:

In-kind & monetary donations
Remote Volunteering
Neighbourhood Help
Offline Volunteering
Diy | start your own project
Online Petition
Important Hotlines

Corona is ubiquitous and, as on (almost) everything, the pandemic also has a major impact on our work.  As the volunteering platform vostel.de, we normally promote the intensive exchange between people through voluntary work. Since social distancing (we prefer the term physical distancing btw) is the order of the day (and probably for the next few months as well), we are confronted with a dilemma – should we advise against engagement that requires a physical presence? Or may we point out that in many areas (e.g. helping the homeless) helping hands are still absolutely necessary?

Well, we do both. So we want to show you in the following weeks (and maybe months) here and on social media under the hashtag #supportduringcorona many ways how you can do good – also from home. In particular, we will be talking about online volunteering and remote volunteering opportunities, neighborhood help, in-kind and financial donations as well as DIY projects you can easily start from home.

At the same time, however, we would like to draw attention to individual offline volunteering opportunities that are dependent on local support even in times of crisis. Of course, all these projects have taken the highest security precautions to protect volunteers, staff and people in need of support from infection with Covid-19.

And last but not least: In order to help others, we ourselves must be doing well. Our friend Jan Lennarz from Ein guter Plan has collected 11 tips on how to get through the pandemic in a relaxed manner. If you need further help dealing with this situation, we have collected helpful numbers where you can find professional support for yourself (and people around you).

And we would be very happy if you joined in and show us using #supportduringcorona what you are doing to help the vulnerable people in our society in this difficult situation. Because #wereinthistogether and because #werebettertogether. 🧡

With a click on the links below you will get directly to the right topic.

In-kind & monetary donations
Remote Volunteering
Offline Volunteering
Neighbourhood Help
DIY | START your own project
Online Petition
Important Hotlines

Just like us, many of the organisation’s employees are sitting in their home office or even had to shut down completely. For some, this is a clear threat to their existence. Costs for rent or bills from cancelled events must be covered, because an NPO is not allowed to have any debts. However, the only way to gain income at the moment is through donated money. But not only money donations can help an NPO to survive the crisis, but also in-kind donations. Creative ideas lead to new ways and alternatives to support the specific target groups despite restrictions – i.e. digital consultations. We would like to introduce you to some organisations and their individual challenges in order to point out their urgent needs.

NEEDED: MONEY DONATION FOR CANCELLED EVENT

OUTING BLOG E.V.

The Outing Blog e.V. offers young people important spaces in which they can develop and educates through workshops on topics such as homophobia, mobbing and sexually transmitted diseases.

Due to the coronavirus, important workshops have been cancelled and the association’s contact points have been closed. The Outing Blog e.V. has lost a total of 400€, which it must now quickly recover in order to be able to continue its work in the future. Your donation can be very helpful here.

Account: Outing Blog e.V.
IBAN: DE30 5005 0201 1203 5130 36
Intended Use: Donation to maintain OB


NEEDED: MONEY DONATION FOR MONTHLY RENT

BLICKWINKEL E.V.

Blickwinkel e.V. offers homework support, discussion events and job application training for children and young people in Neukölln. The courses strengthen the educational opportunities and personalities of the children in order to promote solidarity and respect for others.

In order to make it possible for as many pupils as possible, including those from socially disadvantaged families, to receive their tuition, the fees for tutoring are very low. They therefore cover only a part of our monthly costs – especially for rent and material.

Due to the coronavirus, the NPO can no longer offer its current program and will remain closed until April 17th. However, costs for rent, telephone, etc. do not have a pandemic break and the organisation is now facing a financial challenge. Through Betterplace.org you can co-finance a part of the monthly rent.


NEEDED: 20 SMARTPHONES

STÜTZRAD GGMBH

The project Family Guides, which was initiated by Stützrad gGmbH,  offers refugee families individual counselling by 35 volunteers.

These 35 “Family Guides” are people who have been seeking refuge themselves and are therefore able to perfectly understand the challenges of arriving in a new culture and to share experiences that have already been personally experienced.

Since personal visits by the Family Guides are now prevented by the measures of the coronavirus, the organisation is now looking for 20 smartphones to make telephon counseling possible without having to publish private mobile phone numbers.

If you happen to fill up your extra time at home with clearing out and get hold of your old smartphone, don’t put it back, but contact us! Please contact Anja Rosswinkel via Mail: rosswinkel@stuetzrad.ne


NEEDED: POTTING SOIL AND FLOWERS, PLANTS & SEEDS

EJF GEMEINSCHAFTSUNTERKUNFT FÜR GEFLÜCHTETE IN KAROW

The EJF refugee shelter in Karow has been providing a new home for up to 256 residents since December 2016.

Under normal conditions, visits from friends and family outside the shelter are part of everyday life. However, due to the Corona pandemic, external visitors are no longer allowed, so the coordinator of the accommodation would like to use the circumstances to awaken the garden from hibernation together with the residents.

In order to bring the garden to life, the accommodation needs donations in the form of potting soil and flowers/plants/seeds. You want to donate? With our in-kind donation tool you can easily get in touch with the accommodation.


NEEDED: DISPOSABLE CUPS, BOWLS AND CUTLERY. DISINFECTANT. PACKAGED FOOD PRODUCTS.

BERLINER OBDACHLOSENHILFE E.V.

The Berliner Obdachlosenhilfe e.V. provides homeless people with a fresh meal and clothing during their aid tours. Every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday the team (and usually also many volunteers) is on the road. Right now, the tours are continued, but only by the core team and with special hygiene measures.

To make sure that the team is able to offer their guests food and drinks to-go without any closer contact, disposable cups, bowls and cutlery are required. Also highly desirable disinfectant and packaged food (cans, noodles, etc.) would be a great help.

If you would like to support the Berliner Obdachlosenhilfe with a monetary donation, you can do so via betterplace.org or by making a bank transfer to the following account.

Account: Berliner Obdachlosenhilfe e. V.
IBAN: DE76 4306 0967 1213 2027 00

If you don’t have the possibility to help the homeless aid directly, there are also “Gift fences” in Wedding, where you can hang things for homeless people.

  • Subway station Osloer Straße: 3 gift trees directly at the exit towards Schwedenstraße/Osloer Straße (Wedding)
  • Leopoldplatz: A gift display board at the corner of Ruheplatzstraße/Schulstraße (Wedding)

Have you perhaps hoarded so much that your pantry bursts? Then please donate! 🙂


NEEDED: MONEY DONATION FOR RENT, ELECTRICITY & TEAM

CLEAN RIVER PROJECT E.V.

The Clean River Project e.V. is a non-profit environmental, arts and education project that aims for clean rivers and seas, as well as to reduce plastic waste pollution through active water clean-up and education.

Due to the current situation caused by Covid-19, three Clean Up events, two school projects, a presentation and the opening of the new art exhibition had to be cancelled. As a project based on community and events, this project is now at a standstill and so is the income. Nevertheless, running costs like rent, electricity and the team have to be financed. With the help of your donation the Clean River Project e.V. would be greatly helped. You can donate directly to the account below, via betterplace or via PayPal.

Account: Clean River Project e.V.
IBAN: DE25 5705 0120 0000 2520 31


NEEDED: DONATION FOR RUNNING COSTS

GINSHEIM-GUSTAVSBURGER TAFEL e.V.

The Ginsheim-Gustavsburger Tafel e.V. supplies food to people in need every day.

Like many other Tafel in Germany, the Tafel in Ginsheim-Gustavsburg also has financial problems due to Corona. In order to minimize the risk of infection, the Ginsheim-Gustavsburger Tafel e.V. dispenses with the usual symbolic 2 Euros for food, but still has to cover the usual running costs. Every donation helps the Tafel!

Account: Ginsheim-Gustavsburger Tafel e.V.
IBAN: DE12 5086 2903 0001 8832 59


Remote Volunteering – a commitment you can do from home – was already popular before Corona times but now it’s more en vogue than ever before 🙂 In the following we show you projects that you can now support also in quarantine. If you’re the creative type, it’s also worth a look at youvo.org. This platform gives students and professionals from the design, communication and digital sectors the opportunity to use their skills to support social projects and to strengthen their impact.

NEEDED: EDUCATE AND SENSITIZE AS AN ANTI-BULLYING COACH TO IMPROVE THE COEXISTENCE OF THE FUTURE

ZEICHEN GEGEN MOBBING E.V.

Our partner organisation Zeichen gegen Mobbing e.V. supports affected persons, schools and parents in dealing with mobbing. They hold preventive anti-bullying workshops at schools and act as anti-bullying coaches for those affected.

Many schools are currently closing, but this does not solve existing cases of bullying. Our partner association would therefore like to use the time to develop new approaches with children and young people to make mobbing-free schools possible. Among other things, new teaching and learning formats are to be developed and tested.


SUPPORT A TWITTER ACCOUNT OF AN CAMPAIGN AGAINST MICROPLASTICS IN THE SEA

Ocean. now!

Ocean. Now! is an ocean protection organization that contributes to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals 14 of the Paris Climate Agreement (“Sustainable Development Goals”) – “Life under water” – with art.

Do you spend much time on social media, especially Twitter?

Then you now have the chance to do good with this know-how. For the current project “In Your Face II”, which deals with microplastics in cosmetics and detergents, a volunteer is needed for the Twitter account. For you, this means clicking the link in the description and tweeting, tweeting, tweeting. 


PRO BONO | SEO-SUPPORT TO HELP PRENATALLY ILL CHILDREN INTO LIFE

BUNDESVERBAND ZUR BEGLEITUNG VON FAMILIEN VORGEBURTLICH ERKRANKTER KINDER E.V. (BFVEK)

Do children mean a lot to you? What would you do if you were on your way to becoming a mother or father and your child was diagnosed with a serious illness?

The Bundesverband zur Begleitung von Familien vorgeburtlich erkrankter Kinder e.V.(BFVEK) supports and accompanies families throughout Germany who are confronted with such a situation.

Time is an immense factor for prenatally diseased children, but families usually have a hard time finding suitable doctors quickly. Therefore, it is of great importance that affected families find the BFVEK as quickly as possible via Google, so that they can support them with their knowledge. This is where your role as a volunteer, who has got experience in the field of SEO / Search Engine Optimization, starts to support and give families some hope in a difficult phase. 


SUPPORT OF REFUGEES IN THE ASYLUM PROCEDURE

arrivalaid

ArrivalAid accompanies refugees and migrants in the preparation of their hearings at the Federal Office, as well as in the first steps of integration and in the application process.

Even if there are only a few interviews currently, it is still important to support the refugees in preparing for interviews in the future.

For this reason, ArrivalAid is looking for volunteers to talk to the refugees about their escape situation and simulate a hearing at the Federal Office or at the Administrative Court. If you would like to get involved here, you will first receive a training which is currently taking place via webinars, and then you can start supporting in the asylum procedure.


CREATE SHORT VIDEOS FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE IN A REFUGEE SHELTER

GEMEINSCHAFTSUNTERKUNFT ALBERT-KUNTZ-STRASSE – MILAA GGMBH

The refugee shelter in Hellersdorf offers its 385 residents an environment in which they can arrive in Germany carefree and receive support with everyday issues.

Due to the current situation, the leisure opportunities are very limited. Especially the 150 children and teenagers in the accommodation quickly get cabin fever when they have to do their own thing in their apartments. In order to prevent this, the shared accommodation is currently setting up an Instagram channel, where they regularly publish short videos to brighten up the day for the children.

Do you like sports, handicrafts, telling stories or making up little games or riddles? Make one or more short videos about whatever comes to your mind and share it with the kids so that they can join in! If you’re familiar with Instagram, the staff would also be happy to receive a little Instagram introduction. Check out the profile of the shared accommodation and find out how you can get involved!


The topic of neighbourhood help has experienced an enormous upswing in the last few days – that’s great and we would also like to introduce you to some platforms that match people seeking help with people who help them. But before you start writing to many people and can’t wait to get started, please note: Only get involved in your neighbourhood if you are healthy! Nevertheless, avoid too many social contacts (keyword #socialdistancing or #pysicaldistancing) and limit your help to a few people, because otherwise you will go from being a friendly helper to a virus slingshot yourself! “Don’t just help on it” is also advised in this ZEIT magazine article.

Absolutely in trend are the many different printed forms for neighbourhood assistance, which can then be posted in the hallway. One drawback is that they are all only available in German. That’s why we have made a form that also addresses our English, Turkish and Arabic-speaking neighbours!

nebenan.de

Probably the best known neighbourhood network in Germany is nebenan.de, which connects around 1.4 million neighbours. There, registered people can publish their own offers of help in the direct neighbourhood or take advantage of them. According to their own statements, “only verified neighbours are given access to your neighbourhood”.

wirgegencorona.com

Wir gegen Corona was developed especially for the times of corona and serves as a mediation platform between helpers and people seeking help, e.g. to do shopping. From Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm you can also reach a free telephone service on 0800 08 200 20.

wirhelfen.eu

WirHelfen is a central contact point and bundles various offers of help throughout Germany. Those who are offering help can create an offer of help in a fairly uncomplicated way and choose between “going shopping”, “childcare” and “sharing things”. An interactive map of Germany shows the offers for people seeking help, who can then contact those offering help by e-mail or telephone.

coronaport.net

Coronaport was developed by the 15-year-old Noah Adler from Berlin and is also a matching platform for helpers and people who need help (in Berlin!). In addition, a Corona FAQ seems to be currently in the making.

Quelle: helping-hands.io/de
helping-hands.io/de

Helping Hands provides both a map of Germany, where you can find people seeking help in your area, as well as a function where those people seeking can create their own individual requests. Helping Hands also provides a template “Help for the hallway”, which can be used to offer help to neighbours in different languages 

corona-help.org

The platform corona-help.org from the developers of the successful platform www.volunteer-planner.org is still under construction. A telephone hotline for the placement of helpers is to be established. We are curious 🙂

gegen-den-virus.de

The platform gegen-den-virus.de offers digital notices to download and print out, which can be placed in the neighbourhood by those offering help. They do this either by offering their help themselves or by posting hotline services where people seeking help can call for practical help or simply for a nice chat.

Local Facebook-Groups

In addition, countless local groups and platforms are currently forming. Simply enter “Neighbourhood Help + LOCATION” in the Facebook browser and join one of the numerous groups.

The local press is also constantly reporting on new offers and platforms.


SUPPORT THE EMERGENCY OVERNIGHT STAY AT THE FOOD BANK TO PROVIDE FOOD FOR MANY HOMELESS PEOPLE IN BERLIN

BERLINER STADTMISSION

The Berliner Stadtmission is an independent association of the Protestant Church Berlin-Brandenburg-schlesische Oberlausitz. During the winter months it opens three emergency overnight stays and offers many of the 3000-5000 homeless people in Berlin a bed, food and drink and many varied offers.

Due to the coronavirus, the emergency overnight stay in Reinickendorf has taken special hygiene measures and now more urgently than ever needs volunteers to help prepare salads, cut bread and serve food. It is important that you, as a volunteer, inform yourself in advance about the hygiene measures on site and take the decision to support responsibly.


SUPPORT THE EMERGENCY OHLAUER STRASSE OVERNIGHT STAY WITH VARIOUS TASKS OF DAILY OPERATIONS

JOHANNITER-UNFALL-HILFE E.V. KÄLTEHILFE

Johanniter-Unfall-Hilfe e.V. supports people of all ages and in all situations. From disaster control and refugee assistance to school medical services, elderly care and many other areas, they are a contact point for several target groups.

Due to the current situation, special hygiene measures were taken in the emergency overnight stay for homeless people in Ohlauer Straße, which is why the shelter urgently needs healthy volunteers in its daily operations. Concrete tasks are e.g. bed allocation, food preparation, care, help in the clothing store or during night shifts.

It is important that you, as a volunteer, inform yourself in advance about the hygiene measures on site and take the decision to support responsibly.


There are many offers of help, which you can also initiate or start on your own – or together with family, friends, neighbours, colleagues etc.

OPENING OF A GIFT FENCE

The corona pandemic is forcing more and more social facilities such as the Tafel, night cafés and soup kitchens to close for anti-infection reasons. That’s why many cities now have gift fences (the idea comes from the Hamburg Gabenzaun association), to which food, clothing and hygiene articles for homeless and poorer people can be “attached” (well packed).

A quick search on Ecosia or entering the hashtag #Spendenzaun or #Gabenzaun in the social networks shows in which neighborhoods there are such fences or where they should be installed. If there isn’t one in your neighborhood, you could set up a new gift fence yourself. 🙂

Gift fence in Berlin Neukölln

SEW AND DONATE PROVISONAL RESPIRATORY MASKS

The demand of hospitals, nursing homes and other public institutions for masks/mouth protection is becoming ever greater and manufacturers are no longer able to meet it. So there are more and more requests to volunteers to sew mouth protection themselves and send them to the institutions.

If you have suitable fabrics and a sewing machine at home, this is the perfect opportunity for a do-it-yourself session in quarantine. Instructions for sewing and further information on suitable fabrics have been compiled by here.

Here you can find a list of organisations that are in desperate need of masks:

  • Our partner organisation IFB works hard to improve the living conditions of people with special needs in every phase of life.also has a concrete need. Please contact them here if you would like to sew masks for them.
  • Also the youngcaritas Berlin is looking for diligent sewers! The youngcaritas is committed to voluntary work and is currently calling for the sewing of provisional respiratory masks for institutions, as these are needed more urgently than ever in hospitals, senior homes and homeless shelters. If you can sew and have the opportunity to sew at home, help provide masks to the affected risk group! Click on this link to register and find sewing instructions.

Another possibility to get involved, and that without cost and effort, are online petitions. These can be a useful instrument to make your voice heard politically. However, this requires a large number of signatories.

The following petitions are currently looking for support

#LEAVENOONEBEHIND: PREVENT THE CORONA CATASTROPHE NOW – EVEN AT THE BORDERS!

The media influence to a large extent which topics, especially emergencies, are currently predominant in the world. Because of Covid-19, the suffering of people who have experienced violence and humanitarian disasters, has largely been forgotten.

Right now it is immensely important that we all stick together according to the motto #werebettertogether, because Covid-19 does not distinguish by skin color, religion or gender.

Imagine the situation in the numerous crowded refugee camps:

quarantine not possible + hand washing not possible + social distancing not possible + medical care not possible = Covid-19 outbreak with disastrous consequences.

This is why the EU Commission and EU governments are demanding the following: 1. evacuation of the overcrowded refugee camps, 2. access to medical care and 3. humanitarian and financial support


HELP FOR FREELANCERS AND ARTISTS DURING THE #CORONA-SHUTDOWN

Due to Covid-19, there have been and still are numerous cancellations of events such as concerts, fairs, performances in theatres, opera houses and concert halls, leaving many freelancers without income and unable to make a living.

At the moment, the society is renouncing all cultural life, but there is also a time after Covid-19 when there is supposed to be a diverse cultural landscape. Therefore, in this time of crisis, the government must not forget the art scene and freelancers.

This is the reason why the Federal Minister of Finance, Olaf Scholz, is calling for immediate financial aid for freelancers and people from the creative scene.


NON-PROFIT NEEDS INTERVENTION! STRENGHT CIVIL SOCIETY – NOW

Last year, various associations were denied non-profit status or threatened with it, including the petition platform Cahnge.org and Campact. The tax authorities justify their decisions by stating, among other things, that the platforms pursued individual interests.

With the decisions, the limits of charitable status became clear, which is why an impulse for reform (modern non-profit law) is needed.

Even sports or cultural clubs will in future risk their non-profit status if they make e.g. political statements. Multifaceted debates are the lifeblood of democracy. For this, all social groups must be heard.


SUBMIT YOUR OWN PETITION FOR 120620OLYMPIA

The social business „Einhorn“ and other representatives of the society have launched a unique project. Together with over 60.000 participants, the Olympic Stadium will be used in the summer to provide a stage for the most important issues of our time.

Petitions are an integral part of this vision. People who cannot be present on site should nevertheless be given the opportunity to participate online. Who has the desire to form the future, can bring in from now on his/her ideas in a petition


Police: 110
Fire and emergency rescue service: 112

On-call service for medical assistance: 116 117
Dental emergency service: 030 89004333

Hotline child protection phone: 030 610066
Children’s emergency service: 0 – 13 years Tel.: 030 610061
Youth emergency service: 14 – 18 years Tel.: 030 610062
Girls emergency service: 12 – 21 years Tel.: 030 610063
Help phone for pregnant women in need: 0800 40 40 020

Help portal sexualised abuse: 0800 22 55 530
Violence against women: 08000 116 016 or 030 611 03 00
Ritual violence help line: 0800 30 50 750
White ring: 116 006

Pastoral advice service: 0800 111 0-111 or -222
Youth telephone: 116 111 or 0800 111 0 333
Parents’ emergency telephone parents: 0800 111 0 550
Senior citizens’ telephone: 0800 47 08 090
Muslim pastoral care: 030 44 35 09 821

Addiction assistance: 01805 313031
Alcoholics Anonymous: 08731 32573 12
Addiction and drugs hotline: 01805 313 031


We’ll keep you up to date

Of course, this article is never complete (at least as long as Corona isn’t over) and so we update this blog on a regular basis. Through our social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) we also provide daily updates and keep you up to date with the latest needs from the NPO world.

If you work for an NPO yourself or know of social organisations that need support, please let us know and send a short email to sophie.kahl@vostel.de.


Stay healthy! Your team from vostel.de <3

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