Offers & Needs Board for the Hilltowns and Beyond
We’re in this together. Use Common Good’s online Offers & Needs bulletin board to offer help and ask for help from your friends and neighbors in any community in the United States. No sign-up needed. Go to CommonGood.earth and click on the red Offers & Needs button!
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="239"] “I tried it this morning,” says Mary Link of Ashfield, MA. “I learned that my next door neighbor was going grocery shopping and offering to get food for others to minimize exposure.” Later, Andrea Caluori delivers Mary’s groceries to her front porch.[/caption]
The nonprofit Common Good provides innovative economic tools for local use. During this time of widespread social distancing to combat coronavirus, it’s up to us, as a community, to make sure we all have what we need. So Common Good created and launched a free online Offers & Needs Bulletin Board, where anyone, anywhere in the US, can offer help and ask for help from their neighbors.
Whether it’s a home-cooked meal, a ride to the drugstore, or an hour of childcare, we can use the Offers & Needs board to make it happen. The online bulletin board can help people expand their scope in addressing community needs in bigger ways too. Kirsten Levitt, the director of the Stone Soup Café in Greenfield, MA, used the Offers & Needs bulletin board to find more drivers in communities beyond where the café customarily serves its free, hot meals on Saturdays. “Demand on our service exploded the first Saturday after social distancing went into effect,” Kirsten says. “We’ll only be able to expand capacity to meet demand … with tools like these because we need more volunteers in communities we don’t normally serve. It’s a time for all hands on deck, and Offers & Needs can help.”
Common Good’s director William Spademan says, “our tools for a new economy reflect core values of community resilience and caring about the people around us. Now more than ever, we want to do everything we can to encourage mutual support at the community level.” William adds, “it’s really about neighbors helping neighbors in small ways to make a big impact, without depending on government assistance. It’s how we build an economy that works for everyone, a common good economy.”
Of all the possible ways to give back to your community during the holiday season (and the entire year, too), collecting socks might seem like the smallest of ways to make a difference. In reality, it’s not such a small gesture! The socks that you collect or donate don’t have to be boring six-packs of plain white gym socks…. they can be whimsical or even hand knitted!
Want to share your knowledge & creativity with others? Skillsharing is the answer, where you can proudly share your skills, talents and knowledge with others. Of course it’s not a one-way street…skillsharing means that you can pick up some great tips and skills in return. It’s a wonderful collaborative consumptive way to learn! Best of all, skillsharing means “community” because it is the foundation on which it is built. Think outside the box on ways you can learn and share in your community and check out what that might look like here in Western MA and where you can go to tap into these community-based learning resources. Read on…
Hands-on volunteering experiences can sometimes be hard to find for families with younger children. There are many terrific of organizations within our community that need volunteers to help with a variety of jobs, but often these jobs are skill-specific or take place in environments that may not be welcoming to young children. However, there are lots of community service projects that kids can do at home that make just as large an impact as in-person volunteering…
Spread the spirit of giving and build community this holiday season by organizing a collection drive to support Socks for Seniors! The organization has been collecting socks all over the country for more than ten years! The socks collected in each drive are then given to elderly community members in order to keep their toes nice and warm throughout the winter and share some of the holiday spirit that inspired the project in the first place…
The Stone Soup Cafe in Greenfield brings together community, serving fresh, homemade food to neighbors of all ages and backgrounds. Volunteer opportunities ranging from cooking, serving, performing and cleaning are available — or just bring your family and enjoy a community meal that is inclusive and diverse…
Little Free Library in Wilbraham Honors Neighbors & Remembers Tornado Well, it is little, and it is a library, and, yes, it is free… so it must be a Little Free Library. The first Little Free Library appeared in Hudson, Wisconsin in 2009 and now they can be found in every state and at least thirty-two countries. This one on Pomeroy Street in Wilbraham, Massachusetts is the creation of Steve Fratoni in honor… Read More
Sewing Marathon Creates 485 New Bags for the Bagshare Project! Leni Fried of Cummington, MA writes: Hello Bag Sharers, The Bag Share Sewing Marathons were a roaring success! I sewed for 24 hours straight. By 3 in the morning I felt like I was inside a giant sewing machine and there was nothing outside of it. By 7:30 a.m. I emerged from the church to see a brilliant rainbow over the fields… Read More