Giving back for the greater good
The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasized just how interconnected we all are, and the crisis has inspired some businesses to find creative ways to address societal needs and help bring their communities together.
From ride share companies offering free transportation for healthcare workers to a hardware giant providing grants to minority-owned small businesses, many American corporations are looking for ways to do good. Small business owners, who may be struggling to get back to a healthy financial position, are giving back by donating products or services.
Even during challenging times, social responsibility is here to stay, and businesses have an opportunity to make a positive impact on the communities they serve when so many have experienced setbacks and loss as a result of the pandemic.
How businesses can give back
Giving cash donations (or a portion of sales) to charitable organizations
Donating products via a buy-one-donate-one model
Offering free products and services
Making it easier for customers to donate to a chosen charity
Matching employee donations
Providing grants or other funding
Volunteering time and expertise
Empathy has impact
While it’s certainly not possible for all businesses to give away amounts of money that have the potential for extraordinary impact, experts emphasize that giving back is not only about donation size. Rather, customers are looking for compassion and empathy in the way you do business, and they are likely to remember actions you took to help the community, no matter how small.
One way that Blue Shield of California gives back is to foster a culture of giving among our own employees, sponsoring company-wide giving initiatives, but also encouraging individuals to look for ways to help their communities. For example, one employee made 700+ masks to donate to various Bay Area organizations, while another maximized her donation to a L.A.-based nonprofit with employer matching. Every helpful action and any amount, large or small, counts. Acts of generosity are cause for celebration.
Supporting communities during COVID-19
As a mission-driven nonprofit, Blue Shield of California has looked for ways to help address a wide variety of healthcare needs during the COVID-19 pandemic – from supporting frontline workers to investing in vulnerable communities to helping providers weather the financial impacts of coronavirus.
to MedShare to provide personal protective equipment for healthcare workers in underserved communities
to the Oakland COVID-19 Relief Fund to help local health officials set up a drive-through testing site
in grants from the Blue Shield Foundation to domestic violence shelters, relief foundations for immigrant and undocumented workers, and other organizations helping marginalized communities
in grants to support nutrition for Southern Californians during the pandemic
in grants for youth mental health support in San Diego and Alameda counties