The list below includes free resources for members of the Encore community who are looking for ways to support their neighbors and communities in the weeks ahead. It will be regularly updated as new information comes in. To suggest additional items, please send an email to [email protected].
See our Virtual Events Page, where you’ll find events that Encore.org is hosting, as well as events we’ve discovered through friends or partners in our community.
A Call to Care: They’re facilitating a pen-pal exchange between all generations — people who give one another a sense of safety, community and purpose in this time of isolation. Some prefer text, others call or video chat. Learn more here.
AARP: AARP’s Create the Good program features hundreds of volunteer roles to support youth from home. Enter your ZIP code and then select “Show Only Home/Remote Opportunities” in the upper-left section of the page. Additionally, AARP’s Community Connections includes information on online mutual aid groups that will help you to stay connected, share ideas, and help those in need.
Careervillage.org: COVID-19 is causing a spike in student questions about careers. Give career advice to young people online via this online platform where students ask questions of people with experience in particular fields.
Mon Ami: This organization addresses social isolation among senior citizens by pairing them with college students, often far from their own families. During these times, they have set up a free Volunteer Phone Bank to connect volunteers by phone or video call to older adults who have limited access to the outside world. Their goal is to set up recurring calls to form connections that last over time.
Neighborly invitation: Copy, edit, and distribute this form letter to your neighbors to get a community group off the ground.
Point of Light’s Virtual Volunteer Opportunities: See this robust resource list, which is categorized by activity, impact area, or beneficiaries.
Sharing Smiles: This is an initiative of Empowering the Ages (DC area), which connects adults to youth through two different programs – one connecting groups of adults and youth and the other connecting individuals. With each program, people can find pen pals, write joint stories, create poetry, share artwork, inspire with motivational quotes, and creatively share our individual strengths. Register a group here.
Upchieve: Help low-income high school students by offering math and college-planning advice online. Upchieve connects students with live academic support through its free platform.
Volunteer From Your Couch: If you’re stuck at home, but still want to help your community at this time, see this site for virtual volunteer opportunities. As they say, “No experience necessary. Pajamas encouraged.”
VolunteerMatch: Search virtual and on-site volunteer opportunities to aid communities impacted by COVID-19. Thousands of volunteers are needed daily.
4-7-8 Breath: The 4-7-8 breathing technique, also known as “relaxing breath,” involves breathing in for 4 seconds, holding the breath for 7 seconds, and exhaling for 8 seconds. This breathing pattern aims to reduce anxiety or help people get to sleep.
Care for your Coronavirus Anxiety: These resources — including articles, expert advice, meditations and more — help address anxiety and mental health in a global climate of uncertainty.
Crisis Text Line: If you’re struggling with anxiety right now, reach out to Crisis Text Line by texting SHARE to 741741.
DJ D-Nice’s “Homeschool at Club Quarantine”: DJ D-Nice is bringing a dance party to everybody at home through his daily event, “Homeschool at Club Quarantine.” Recently, more than 160,000 people joined him on Instagram Live. Former first lady Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, former Vice President Joe Biden and Jennifer Lopez all “dropped in” on his dance party. Follow him on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dnice/
Down Dog: All of their apps – Down Dog, Yoga for Beginners, HIIT, Barre, and 7 Minute Workout – are completely free until May 1st. They’re also offering free access until July 1st for all students and teachers (K-12 and college) and extending free access until July 1 for all healthcare professionals.
“Feeling anxious and stuck inside?“: This Medium post offers a list of free at-home workouts and meditations, including those from Glo, CorePower and others.
Friendship Line California: A vital lifeline for people aged 60 years and older and adults living with disabilities to connect with a caring, compassionate voice ready to listen and provide emotional support. As the nation’s only accredited hotline of its kind, this service supports all older Californians who may benefit from a friendly conversation.
In The Rooms: If you want to get sober or are already in recovery, there are lots of virtual meetings taking place at InTheRooms.com.
Nightly Met Opera Streams: Stream handpicked past performances of the Met’s Live in HD series each night right from the organization’s website. The performances will go live at 7:30 p.m. ET and will remain active for 20 hours.
Quarantine Chat: Pairs you with another person to talk about anything: What you’re cooking for dinner, your dreams, or the global economy.
Stuck at Home? These 12 Famous Museums Offer Virtual Tours You Can Take on Your Couch (Video): Google Arts & Culture teamed up with over 2500 museums and galleries around the world to bring anyone and everyone virtual tours and online exhibits of some of the most famous museums around the world.
Tea @ 3: This community matches you with a “Tea-Mate” of a different generation for a phone call once a week. You’ll connect over tea, enjoy a wonderful conversation – and perhaps share words of wisdom, too.
Watch These Livestreamed Concerts During Your Social Distancing: As artists scramble to figure out what to do next, many have started livestreaming concerts on social media from their homes, empty venues, or wherever they can while they practice social distancing. Here’s a list of the performances you should be checking out while you stay inside, too, updated as more artists announce their livestream plans.
America Forward’s Advocacy in Times of Crisis Briefing: America Forward shares guidance about advocacy work in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. See these materials to learn how social entrepreneurs and nonprofits can meaningfully advance key priorities in the midst of such massive disruption.
Annotated Strategy Triage Tool: Community leaders must begin to reorient themselves to a new reality and make choices about their work when it comes to what’s needed and what’s possible going forward. This tool helps leaders begin or refine that process.
Ben Delaney’s Nonprofit Marketing Handbook: The chapter on Crisis Communications from Ben Delaney’s Nonprofit Marketing Handbook has been released at no charge for leaders of nonprofits organizations to help them deal with fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
BoardSource: What Nonprofit Board Members Should Be Doing Right Now to Address the COVID-19 Situation: These guidelines for boards offer key considerations and suggestions for how they can work with nonprofits to respond to this crisis.
Chronicle of Philanthropy, “Responding to the Coronavirus Outbreak: Resources to Help Nonprofits”: The impacts of the virus on your nonprofit can be a lot to handle. The Chronicle of Philanthropy has put together a few online resources to save you time, help you plan swiftly, and keep you focused on your most pressing priorities.
How We Run Podcast: Tips and tales of non-profit success in fundraising, board development, and doing good. Each episode features an interview with a non-profit about the tactics they use to raise funds and have impact. Hosted by Julie Lacouture (non-profit consultant and founder of Good Ways Inc) and Trent Stamp (founder of Charity Navigator and CEO of the Eisner Foundation).
Mapping Our Social Change Roles in Times of Crisis: This mapping exercise offered by Deepa Iyer helps identify our roles in a social change ecosystem. Together, the map and reflection guide can be used at an individual level to reflect, assess, and plan, as well as at staff and board retreats, team-building meetings, orientations, and strategy sessions.
Resources for Online Meetings, Classes, and Events: As we scramble to move our offline interactions online, this is an emerging initial place to share, curate and organize resources. Created by the Facilitators for Pandemic Response group and other collaborators.
Virtual Mentoring Portal: iCouldBe, one of the leading experts on virtual mentoring in the U.S. since 2000, and MENTOR, the nation’s field and movement leader for youth mentoring for the last 30 years have joined forces to develop this free tool. The Virtual Mentoring Portal provides unstructured (internal, monitored email) or structured (research-back curriculum) communications and will provide mentoring programs with virtual mentoring access for existing mentees ages 13 or older, and their mentors. The platform has been constructed with respect to best practices, safety, and data privacy.
Zoom: This video conferencing platform has a free plan that includes the following features: Host up to 100 participants on a call, unlimited 1 to 1 meetings, 40 minute limit on group meetings, unlimited number of meetings and online support. Here are some additional resources that will help you most effectively use Zoom as we navigate the coronavirus pandemic.
America’s Promise Alliance Covid-19 Resources: Members of America’s Promise Alliance and their networks have developed and compiled a wide range of resources to help educators, out-of-school-time providers, parents and families, and community leaders support their young people.
Caribu: This video-calling app integrates children’s books and activities, allowing more children to get at least 20 minutes a day of reading and “screen positive” time with a trusted adult — anywhere in the world. Caribu is free during the COVID-19 pandemic to facilitate connections between separated grandparents and grandkids — but could also be used by intergenerational programs as a tool to keep isolated kids and older adults connected through reading and other literacy activities.
CIRKEL Up: Meet an interesting new person from a different generation every month. Everyone is a mentor and a mentee, fostering a unique two-way mentorship for mutual personal and professional growth. This is open to anyone, anywhere and CIRKEL Up is offering three months free, with three introductions. Apply here.
Class Central’s Online Ivy League Courses: See this listing for college courses to help keep your mind sharp and engaged during the pandemic.
COVID-19 Resource Guide for Newcomers: This website contains resources to help newcomers to the U.S. who are impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The guide covers topics such as online learning for children, tech support, school closures, financial help, food, healthcare, unemployment insurance, and more.
COVID-19 Resources for Older Adults & Caregivers: This comprehensive list from the National Council on Aging includes information on meals, transportation and other services.
- COVID-19 Fact Sheet for Grandfamilies and Multigenerational Families: Offers suggestions on how to stay healthy, informed and connected.
- Intergenerational Programs and Physical Distancing Guide: Shares ideas and solutions on how intergenerational professionals can adapt programs and activities and create new intergenerational connections during the COVID-19 pandemic.
DecisionData.org: See these basic internet safety tips to help seniors stay connected online during this time.
Getsetup: Free education to seniors to help them and their loved ones get through the next couple of months to stay healthy, connected and productive. Their team of retired teachers will help with basic tech, such as: Gmail, Facebook, Zoom, Understanding Medicare, Social Security benefits, how to order groceries and household items online with Instacart and Amazon Prime, finding entertainment options like Netflix and even finding online exercise classes. Their course “Stay Connected With Family and Friends” shares how to set up a video chat on services like Zoom, Webex and Skype.
Grandparents Academy: Grandparents Academy helps older adults leverage the power of existing technology to grow meaningful relationships and rich legacies with their loved ones. Check out and download their free list of ebooks here, including for FaceTime and Skype.
Nextdoor: The social networking app launched a new interactive map to let neighbors offer help to one another. It’s called Help Map and the tool lets you mark yourself as available to help with anything from grocery shopping to child care.
Op-ed Writing — Tips and Tricks: These free resources and tips from The OpEd Project include FAQs on how to write and pitch and contact information for many media outlets.
PACT Movil®: A free, easy-to-use M-Learning platform that provides basic educational material in Spanish, with automatic translation into English, Vietnamese, and Portuguese.
Should You Take a Gap Year During COVID-19?: With many traditional colleges returning virtually in fall 2020, students are beginning to wonder if they should take a gap year. TheBestSchools.org have created a guide to help assist in this decision.
StoryCorps Connect: Enables you to record a StoryCorps interview with a loved one remotely using video conference technology. The audio and a still photo from each interview goes into an archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Your interview becomes part of American history, and hundreds of years from now, future generations will listen in.
Tinkergarten at Home: Launched by Tinkergarten, the organization that’s known for its outdoor-based early childhood education programs to get caregivers outside—and learning—with their kids. Sign-up to get free access to weekly Tinkergarten activities, educational insights, and live online sessions with other families. To reach even more kids and families, they’re now offering activities in Spanish and English.
Top 100 Virtual Tours Around The World : This post includes 100 links to virtual tours and unique experiences around the world.
#WeavingCommunity during Crisis: The National Conversation Project’s 300 partner organizations are coming together to invite us to weave together a stronger community, especially at this time. Share an inspiring post, join a video or phone conversation, or engage in a neighborly act of kindness (see their list of ideas). Check out their prompts, tips and ideas here.
Published: April 14, 2020