Donating or volunteering can alleviate the feelings of anxiety and helplessness — and the boredom — most of us are experiencing during this crisis. There are ways to help during this coronavirus pandemic without violating the stay-at-home order and putting yourself or others at risk. At the same time, you can reduce the risk for the front-line workers, help an out-of-work musician earn some money, virtually tip your favorite bartender, cheer up a nursing home resident and more. You don’t even need to donate — if you buy a restaurant gift card now, you can treat yourself and others to a nice dine-in meal when all this is over. (updated March 28)
Help with errands and more
Serving Seniors Program: Volunteer drivers are needed to pick up and deliver meals to the doorsteps of seniors and other high-risk residents on Mondays and Thursdays from 11 a.m to 2 p.m. Hands On New Orleans, in partnership with World Central Kitchen, is coordinating the program. Each driver will deliver to five to six households in the same ZIP code.
If you went to even one parade this past Carnival season, you probably have a pile of beads in your house right now. Even if you didn’t, a bag of beads may be lurking in a closet or in the attic. That means you’ve done your part to keep beads off the streets and out of the drainage system during the parades. Now is the time — unless you haven’t had enough of the glue gun and are planning an art project — to recycle the colorful strands that were so much fun to catch. Most bead recycling in the region is through nonprofit organizations that provide jobs to disabled adults, who clean and sort the throws so they can be sold to float riders for the next season.
Heralding the Uptown parade season, the B’nai B’rith Mardi Gras Mitzva Makers will parade through local hospitals on Sunday, Feb. 2. For the 41st year, the Mitzva (Good Deed) Makers will gather at 9:30 a.m. at the Prytania Street entrance to Touro Infirmary Hospital to parade through the long-term care and rehabilitation centers, bringing the Mardi Gras experience to those not able to attend the festivities otherwise. The volunteer krewe of musicians and maskers also proceeds to nearby long-term care facility Curahealth Hospital on Coliseum Street and assisted-living facility Homelife in the Gardens on Aline Street. All are welcome to join this second-line parade by showing up in costume and with throws and an instrument, if you play, for the second-line band led by trumpeter and dentist Hilton Title.
Volunteers are needed to join Hoffman Triangle residents and representatives from the city, businesses and churches for a Community Clean Up on Saturday, Jan. 18. Volunteers will be helping Hoffman Triangle neighbors from 9 a.m. to noon. Check-in is at 8:30 a.m. at Taylor Playground, 2600 S. Roman St., and from there neighborhood leaders will guide volunteers along the streets to clean. The event includes a resource fair where residents will have the opportunity to interact with several city departments.
On Thursday, Dec. 19, Gia Maione Prima Foundation and J.P. Morgan Chase presented “Tunes for Toys” at Tipitina’s. For the price of one unwrapped toy, fans could see the Trombone Shorty Academy band, New Breed Brass Band and Hot 8 Brass Band. All of the toys collected were donated to Trombone Shorty’s toy giveaway, Toys from Troy, at his alma mater, Warren Easton High School. The toys will be given away at Warren Easton today in an event hosted by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and featuring Santa Claus as well as the Trombone Shorty Academy players.
“We’re on a mission to rebuild our programs and physical structure,” said Dr. Shelia J. Webb, president-elect of the Young Women’s Christian Association in New Orleans. Hurricane Katrina and the levee failures decimated the YWCA building at 601 S. Jefferson Davis Parkway and forced a 14-year interruption of an agency that had been an integral part of New Orleans for almost a century. Under the leadership of current President Loyce Pierce Wright and a multi-generational group of volunteers, including judges Terri Love and Bernadette D’Sousa, the YWCA’s Legacy Circle will host a reunion of former Y Role Models on Sunday, Nov. 17, at the Holiday Inn New Orleans–Downtown Superdome, 330 Loyola Ave. Former New Orleans First Lady Sybil Morial and former U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, both 1989 Role Models, are co-chairing the event, which will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. Proceeds will be dedicated to the agency’s rebuilding campaign.
YAYA Inc. will host their annual Just Say YAYA gala tonight (Nov. 15) to help support tuition-free arts and entrepreneurship training programs for local youth. The gala takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. at the YAYA Arts Center at 3322 LaSalle St. They will celebrate “ARTrepreneurs” and career development to benefit creative young people. Festivities begin with a patron party from 6 to 7 p.m., which includes an oyster bar by Superior Seafood, music by Amber Matthews, and a live glassblowing demonstration.
Kingsley House honored its veterans on Nov. 8 with a special celebratory ceremony that commenced with the Pledge of Allegiance and the national anthem, a gift presentation by the Kingsley House children and remarks from guest speaker, William F. Ryan, a retired U.S. Marine Corps officer. Most of the veterans honored are enrolled in the Kingsley Adult Day Care program on the Patrick F. Taylor campus, which provides effective day care in a community setting for at-risk seniors, medically fragile adults and veterans. “Today, as we celebrated our veterans, we had an opportunity to honor some extraordinary men who have tirelessly served our country,” said Nathalie Fenno, adult services director of Kingsley House. “With support from funders such as the Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust and Pratt-Stanton Manor Fund, we have recently enhanced our adult day-care program and can now provide additional high-quality services for our veterans and other vulnerable adults in the community.”
Established in 1896, Kingsley House initiated its KADC program in 1974, and today it is the largest adult day-care program in New Orleans and the state.
According to Propeller: A Force For Social Innovation, the nonprofit has accelerated over 215 entrepreneurs since 2011, and their ventures have created more than 485 jobs and generated over $112 million in revenue and financing. Propeller will host its annual gala and celebrate social entrepreneurs and innovation in New Orleans this Wednesday, Nov. 6. Propeller Pop! will take place in the Propeller incubator (4035 Washington Ave.) and will feature more than 10 popup restaurants, a tasting room by Roulaison Distilling Co., a silent auction, and more.
Kingsley House has unveiled a new sculpture, “Pointing the Way to a Better Future,” in commemoration of the late New Orleans philanthropist, Patrick F. Taylor. Taylor pushed for the Lower Garden District agency’s expansion before his death in 2004, and whose foundation was a significant donor to its newest facility. The dedication ceremony on Friday included remarks from Phyllis Taylor, widow of Patrick F. Taylor, representatives from the Mayor’s Office and City Council, before the statue was unveiled by Kingsley House children. Kingsley House, headquartered at 1600 Constance Street, has facilities throughout the metro area. The statue is at its Lower Garden District location at 901 Richard Street.