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KUNC is here to keep you up-to-date on the news about COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, and answer your questions about Colorado's response to its spread in our state.

Ways You Can Help During The Coronavirus Outbreak

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KUNC

COVID-19 has created major disruptions in our community, and many of our neighbors are in need of help.

Here are some ways you can offer assistance.

Food Banks: All area food banks are facing increased demand and are in need of both cash donations and volunteer help in order to maintain services.

Area Blood Banks: Restrictions on large gatherings is forcing cancellations of community blood drives, the largest source of blood donations. Area hospitals are now experiencing or expecting shortages in coming days. The FDA has declared that donating and receiving blood is safe as long as proper precautions are taken. Donations are being accepted at these locations:

United Way:

United Way of Weld County has information and a list of important resources, and has partnered with Weld Community Foundation to introduce the Weld Recovers Fund: COVID-19 Relief to provide financial resources to charitable organizations in the Weld County area that are involved in supporting populations that have been affected by the outbreak.

United Way of Larimer County has a comprehensive list of volunteer opportunities and resources available, and in partnership with the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado has announced the Northern Colorado COVID-19 Response Fund to assist those already struggling as a result of new public health-related policies that affect local families' ability to maintain financial stability.

General Ways To Help

Support Local Businesses: Many restaurants remain open for take out and delivery, and some local stores are offering curbside service or delivery. And buying gift certificates online when possible also helps provide much needed cash during forced closures.

If you have an appointment with a service provider that must be canceled (house cleaner, hair dresser, etc) that you've already budgeted for, consider paying them anyway.

Support Local Arts Organizations: Cancelled performances are taking much needed income from local performing arts non-profits. If you bought tickets to a local theater performance, symphony concert or similar event, consider donating any refund to the organization.

Support Local Artists and Venues: Cancelled performances are also impacting venues and artists. Many shows will be rescheduled, so don't ask for refunds. Just hold on to purchased tickets until the new date.

Many local bands are performing live-streamed shows to support themselves. Follow them on social media to stay up to date, and buying merch from their website is always a good way to help.

The Colorado Artists Talents and Skills database helps creatives who have had gigs canceled or postponed find work using their other abilities. Consider hiring a local artist for a range of services from virtual private lessons to bookkeeping, design and consulting.

Personal:

Create a household plan of action in case anyone in your family becomes sick. The CDC has recommendations.

Reach out to friends, family and neighbors who might be high-risk (especially the elderly or immunocompromised) to offer to grocery shop, pick up medicine, or other essentials. Even just a phone call to check in on them can help them through lonely and scary times.

Do you have more information on ways to help? Send us a tip using the form below.