Feeling a little helpless? That is completely normal, as we all attempt to settle into our new routines that are being impacted every day as new information about COVID-19 and the response to it are announced. If you are not an emergency or essential personnel at this time it is hard to balance the feelings knowing that staying home and out of their way is crucial but we also sit here knowing that there are many people in our Valley community who need assistance. There are some easy things you can do to help, many from the safety of your own home!

How To Get Involved As A Volunteer

Don’t know where to start? Complete the Valley Volunteer Google Form, volunteers are coordinated by State Representative Kara Rochelle and Team! See the article written by the Valley Independent here or register as a volunteer with the State of CT.  Assistance is needed to shop and deliver supplies to high-risk community members, pick-up donations, and the highest need for anyone with medical training. Please be honest with yourself, and the volunteer coordinators.  If you are a high-risk person, have any symptoms, or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, consider alternative ways to get involved.

What & Where to Donate Supplies

Food & Household Items

All of our local pantries are in need of immediate supplies! Consider donating extra food items, diapers & baby wipes, paper products (toilet paper, paper towels) in your home, or pick up a little extra during your next shopping trip. Coordinate with one of the pantries listed below for donation drop offs and find additional details.

  • Spooner House (Shelton) – Call (203) 225-0453 for more information.
  • Seymour Oxford Food Bank (Seymour/Oxford) – Please check Facebook Page for updates or call (203) 888-7826.
  • Christ Episcopal Church Food Bank (Ansonia)- Open Tuesday- Thursday 9am-1pm. Please call (203) 734-2751 for more information.
  • St. Vincent De Paul (Derby) – Open Monday & Tuesdays from 9:30am-2:30pm, for more information and updates, please check Facebook Page for updates, or call (203) 734-7577.

Blood

We all have it! The Red Cross is in desperate need for blood donations. You can schedule a time with the Red Cross through their website, it may take longer than usual to get an appointment– please be patient and know that it does not reflect the great need! 

Medical Supplies & Personal Protective Equipment

If you have or know of a business that has personal protective equipment (PPE) in the original packaging, unopened, and not expired can donate gloves, masks, etc. can be donated to Griffin Hospital (See linked article for details), or you can submit a donation form coordinated by 2-1-1 CT

Sew Face Masks

Do you have a sewing talent, or interest in teaching yourself? Home-made masks and face coverings will save the PPE that our medical professionals need and provide non-emergency people with protection while going to the grocery store and out in public for other essential errands. Check out Joann Fabrics website for some great patterns and ideas

Where to donate funds

Unable to leave your hours or give your time right now? If you are still working and able to financially contribute to a local organization, this is the time! Local non-profit organizations and agencies are challenged with increased needs and requests by the constituents they serve, while simultaneously unable to host their annual fundraisers that fund their operating costs not covered by donors and grants. Here are a few great causes to consider

The show must go on, and that is true for The Annual Great Give Campaign! Valley organizations will still participate this year on May 5th & 6th! Make a contribution to your favorite organization(s) to help them win prizes, and meet their fundraising goals!

We Will Always Be Valley Strong

You may not be able to give now, or tomorrow, but there may be a time when it is right. Regardless of your abilities to get involved with the suggested opportunities, we can ALL continue to check-in on each other.  This includes our neighbors, whether you have a close relationship or not. Keep an eye out, are they picking up their mail? Are they leaving, or is someone coming to drop off groceries?  Caring for others does not cost a thing!  If you do know someone who needs support that you are unable to provide, encourage them to reach out to Connecticut’s 2-1-1 System online, or just simply dial 2-1-1 on any phone for assistance. 

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