Support Your Community

Direct people to 211. 211 Maine is working on the front lines of the pandemic. Expert 211 specialists provide real-time information on social services and other resources to those in need. If you know someone who is struggling, or just looking for a source of reliable information, tell them to dial 211 (or 1-866-811-5695) or text their zip code to 898-211. They can also find information by visiting www.maine.gov/dhhs/coronavirus.

Make a donation to the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund for Eastern Maine. And don’t forget about your favorite charity. They may have just had to cancel their biggest fundraiser of the year. Nonprofits need your help now more than ever.

Volunteer. The United Way of Eastern Maine (UWEM) has established the COVID-19 Emergency Response Volunteer site for Eastern Maine to meet the immediate needs of individuals and families that are impacted by COVID-19. Organizations that serve populations in need every day will find themselves under-resourced to serve a growing demand for those services. This site has been set up to connect volunteers with opportunities to help our Eastern Maine communities.If you are an individual interested in volunteering or an organization looking for volunteers learn more and sign up today at: volunteerme.unitedwayem.org/aem

Help us fulfill the needs with donation of items. Whether it’s by dropping of much needed items (a full list is here) or donating or making masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) (for more information click here.)

Caring for yourself

Use the telephone, email, text messaging, and social media to connect with friends, family, and others.

Talk “face to face” with friends and loved ones using Skype or FaceTime.

Relax your body often by doing things that work for you-take deep breaths, stretch, meditate or pray, or engage in activities you enjoy.

Pace yourself between stressful activities, and do something fun after a hard task.

Talk about your experiences and feelings to loved ones and friends, if you find it helpful.

Maintain a sense of hope and positive thinking; consider keeping a journal where you write down things you are grateful for or that are going well.

Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.

Take care of your body. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep.

Keep busy with hobbies, try out arts and crafts, pick up an old musical instrument, organize family game nights, and step outside for fresh air.

Make time to unwind.

Caring for your children

Take time to talk with your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.

Reassure your child or teen that they are safe. Let them know it is ok if they feel upset. Share with them how you deal with your own stress so that they can learn how to cope from you.

Limit your family’s exposure to news coverage of the event, including social media. Children may misinterpret what they hear and can be frightened about something they do not understand.

Try to keep up with regular routines. Create a schedule for learning activities and relaxing or fun activities.

Be a role model. Take breaks, get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well. Connect with your friends and family members.

Caring for your neighbors

Check in on your neighbors, especially those who are older. If you do not have their phone number, consider leaving a note with your contact information in the mailbox or on the door, or talking through the door to see if they need support in accessing services or food.

People who live alone will likely feel scared, helpless, sad, or even panicked. Now more than ever, family, friends and neighbors should be reaching out to people who are living alone.

Donate blood to help maintain a sufficient blood supply and prevent shortages as concerns about the outbreak of COVID-19 rise in the U.S.

It’s scary to see empty shelves when you are out of a particular item, but please do not hoard or over-buy essential items, most stores across are doing their best to restock as soon as possible.

Support local small businesses who have experienced a significant decrease in patronage by purchasing gift certificates for use later, ordering for delivery or pick up

Pay for cancelled services that you already had booked. If you have regular appointments on the calendar — like with a nanny, babysitter, dog walker, spa or salon worker, fitness instructor, house cleaners, masseuses, etc. — if you are able, consider paying your providers even though you can’t get your services right now.

Use your tech skills and offer to help people who could benefit, for example, helping someone file for unemployment, helping an older neighbor get set up with a Google Home or FaceTime to connect with loved ones.

If you have additional ideas for how to offer support, please send suggestions to info@unitedwayem.org.