New York City cityscape

COVID-19 resources for those in need and ways to help others

During this time, New Yorkers are facing unique challenges. will be using our platform and leveraging our public, nonprofit and private partnerships to identify and develop helpful resources, information and volunteer or donation opportunities for New Yorkers in need, or those looking to lend a helping hand. If you have resources or information you’d like to add to this list, please submit them to [email protected].

Updates on COVID-19

Visit the following sites for information about COVID-19, symptoms, prevention and the government’s response.

Mental health and wellness

ThriveNYC: The City’s mental health initiative provides support for those experiencing anxiety, depression and stress. Reach out for assistance via NYC Well, a confidential 24/7 helpline staffed by trained counselors. They can provide brief counseling and referrals to care in over 200 languages. Call 888-NYC-WELL (888-692-9355), text “WELL” to 65173 or chat at

Combating Discrimination and Violence

Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence: While NYC’s Family Justice Centers are temporarily closed, services remain available by phone, such as immediate safety planning, shelter assistance and other resources.

New York City Commission for Human Rights: If you believe you may have been discriminated against, be it racial or housing discrimination, contact NYCCHR to report it. Additionally, Attorney General James recently announced the launch of a hotline for New Yorkers to report hate crimes and bias-based incidents. Call 1-800-771-7755, or email [email protected]

The Center for Anti-Violence Education: CAENY is offering an online workshop titled “Responding to Xenophobia during the spread of Coronavirus” until March 31st. In these sessions, individuals will learn about strategies to respond to bias and xenophobia against Asian communities.

How to volunteer and donate

NYC Service: This city agency leads the Volunteer Coordination Taskforce (VCTF) in partnership with NYC Emergency Management, New York Cares and other partners to centralize and coordinate volunteer efforts during emergencies. Click here for resources and information on how community-based organizations and individuals can safely support COVID-19 response efforts.

NYC Department for the Aging: Volunteer to help aging New Yorkers in your neighborhood. Seniors can call 212-244-6469 to find out about assistance during recommended social distancing.

Food Bank NYC: This nonprofit provides volunteer opportunities and a map for locations of soup kitchens, pantries or other public assistance.

ACCESS HRA: Apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP/food stamps)

GiveDirectly: This global nonprofit is localizing it’s reach nationally and partnering with FreshEBT to provide an emergency cash response in the form of grants of up to $1,000 per household for those most in need. You can click here to donate to the effort.

HungerFree NYC: Publishes “Neighborhood Guides to Food and Assistance”that cover all NYC neighborhoods by zip code and are available in multiple languages.

United Way NYC: United Way of New York City has established the COVID-19 Community Fund, a dedicated resource to support the COVID-19 public health emergency; you can also donate to their national relief effort here. UWNYC also offers Plentiful, a free app that connects the city’s food pantries with people in need.

Call for medical equipment and supplies

There is a shortage of personal protective equipment products for healthcare workers in New York’s hospitals, including gloves, masks and gowns. New York City is sourcing companies, vendors and individuals who can assist in manufacturing these items. Click here to fill out the response form.

New York State is also asking all personal protective equipment product providers to sell to the state any products that are not essential or not currently being used. Click here to offer your services.

For small business owners and entrepreneurs

NYC Department of Small Business Services: For guidelines for business owners to address changes in customer behavior and for financial assistance and city programs for small businesses impacted by COVID-19; see below for grant programs and funding:

  • NYC Employee Retention Grant Program: Businesses with one to four employees that can demonstrate at least a 25 percent decrease in revenue as a result of COVID-19 are eligible to receive a grant covering up to 40 percent of their payroll for two months. Businesses can access up to $27,000.
  • NYC Small Business Continuity Fund: Businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decreases of 25 percent or more are eligible for zero-interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate losses in profit

U.S. Small Business Administration: Economic Injury Disaster Loans are now available to small businesses in multiple states, including New York.

Kiva: This nonprofit is supporting small businesses impacted by COVID-19 by expanding loan eligibility and amounts for small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Facebook Small Business Grants Program: Facebook will be offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Alice: This free digital platform for entrepreneurs has created a central resource hub to support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Funding, tech and informational resources are being created and shared daily. Alice also has a $200,000 business grant fund for business owners.

For nonprofits

The New York Community Trust: NYCT, in partnership with the Ford Foundation, Carnegie Corporation and other institutions, has created the NYC COVID-19 Response & Impact Fund to provide grants and loans to NYC-based nonprofits that are trying to meet the new and urgent needs that are hitting the city.

Brooklyn Community Foundation: This community foundation’s Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund will issue grants to front-line service organizations providing lifelines for vulnerable populations from meal delivery, support for low-wage workers and other emerging needs.

For freelancers, artists and creatives

Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment: Take this survey if you’re a nightlife worker, freelancer or business impacted by COVID-19; it will help inform the City’s response and relief efforts.

New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA): Visit this nonprofit service organization’s site for information on emergency grant funding for creatives.

Made in NY Media Center: The Media Center is a city-supported hub for information on ways to help artists and creatives, from resource guides to available funding and remote work opportunities.

The Actors Fund: This national organization is providing emergency assistance to professionals in the creative industries, such as film, theater, TV and music.

Freelancers Union: This membership organization for independent workers has launched the Freelancers Relief Fund to offer financial assistance of up to $1,000 per freelance household to cover lost income and essential expenses not covered by government relief programs. They have also compiled a guide to COVID-19 resources for freelancers.

Foundation of Contemporary Arts: This artist funded non-profit has launched an Artist Relief Fund for U.S.-based artists who’ve fallen on hard times because of the COVID-19 outbreak. If you’ve had a performance or show canceled because of COVID-19, apply.

PEN America: The organization is expanding its Writers’ Emergency Fund to support members of the literary community impacted by COVID-19 job layoffs and closures.

For the restaurant and service industries

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation: This nonprofit has created a COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund to provide direct relief to restaurant workers and zero-interest loans to help restaurants get up and running.

Rethink Food.NYC: This nonprofit organization has launched the Restaurant Response Program to assist 30 New York City restaurants with funding of up to $40,000 to maintain their operations.

For parents

NYC Department of Education: For student activities and resources and guidance for teachers, and for up to date information about how New York City public schools are adapting to COVID-19, such as the grab-and-go school meals program, remote learning, device rentals and regional enrichment centers for the children of first responders, health care and transit workers and the most vulnerable student populations.

For workers

New York State Department of Labor website: Visit the NYS DOL website for unemployment assistance. The state is waiving the 7-day waiting period for unemployment insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to COVID-19 closures.

Workforce1 Career Centers: While physical centers are closed, the NYC Department of Small Business Services’ Workforce1 Career Centers are now operating remotely; if you need assistance identifying job opportunities, preparing for interviews, or accessing training, visit the virtual system.

ACCESSNYC: A portal for NYC residents to determine their eligibility for over 30 economic opportunity programs and benefits. It also includes a regularly updated list of COVID-19 response resources.

Online learning and professional resources

LinkedIn Learning: LinkedIn is offering 16 of its learning courses for free, which include tips on how to stay productive, build relationships when you’re not face-to-face, use virtual meeting tools and balance family and work dynamics in a healthy way.

National Cyber Security Alliance: NCSA’s Stay Safe Online initiative has compiled a COVID-19 Security Resource Library with tips and recommendations on ways for both employees and businesses to stay safe online and avoid cyber threats and scams during this pandemic.

Public Libraries: While all branches in the city’s three library systems are closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, New York Public Library, Brooklyn Public Library and Queens Public Library have expanded their online resources and collections for book lovers, parents and students and job seekers.


If you have resources or information you’d like to add to this list, please submit them to [email protected]