How Civic Organizations Are Helping to Fight COVID-19
Nonprofits have proven to be critical links in the nation’s public health infrastructure, but even those with mandates unrelated to health and poverty relief are turning out to be integral to their communities’ survival.
One of the great cruelties of COVID-19 is how it has transformed communities—collections of organizations, shared spaces, and the social bonds that tie them together—into grave threats to public health. Before the pandemic, the serendipitous networks of trust and caring fostered in community settings were a source of solace and collective well-being. Parents who met picking up kids from daycare could turn to each other in times of need. Volunteers bringing food to older adults could also check on them when worried about their health. But during the COVID-19 pandemic, face-to-face interactions and door-to-door check-ins are irresponsible and even deadly. What good is a robust community at a time when we cannot convene? What are civic organizations—embodiments of community life—doing to sustain their communities through this time?