The COVID-19 outbreak is threatening the health of the family, friends, and communities we love but we also know that doing good for our communities will be even more important in the coming weeks and months. With our move to a ‘virtual’ campus and online operations, the Do Good Institute remains committed to continuing to support Terps with their Do Good projects while ensuring the health and safety of our community.
Given recent UMD and government guidance and actions, the 2020 Do Good Challenge and Finals event is understandably cancelled this spring. We recognize the disappointment this will cause our students and friends, but we know that our community is resilient and full of individuals committed to doing good for a lifetime.
We are committed to supporting our community responding to COVID-19. While we may not be on campus, our team is working virtually and we have systems in place to continue to support Do Good projects and ventures. And, we will be working with members of our community to support new ideas and virtual programming that empower the community now, or aim to help rebuild after this crisis.
We are also developing plans to ensure the 2021 Do Good Challenge is the best yet with showcases for students and alums who are changing their communities and the world for good. While we empower students to make a difference during such uncertain times, we are making the following changes to our programs and physical space until further notice:
The Do Good Accelerator (located at 7878 Diamondback Drive, Suite B, College Park, MD) will remain closed until the University of Maryland deems it safe to reopen. Anyone with access or membership to the Accelerator should refrain from entering the space until further notice.
The 2020 Do Good Challenge has been cancelled. This includes the Finals event scheduled for April 30, 2020. In recognition of all the hard work that teams have done through their social impact projects and ventures this year, we are exploring new opportunities to engage and highlight students as well as alum teams as part of the 2021 Do Good Challenge. We are committed to putting on the best Do Good Challenge ever in 2021 and will be sharing more details in the future.
Do Good Mini-Grants will continue, with no changes at this time. Twenty four Spring 2020 Mini-Grant teams were granted awards and will have up to a year to use their funds. You can read about our Spring Mini-Grant Recipients here.
Our Twelve Spring Do Good Accelerator Fellows will continue to receive virtual coaching, program support and resources for the remainder of the semester. To learn about our Spring Fellows click here.
The Summer Do Good Accelerator Fellows program is accepting applications for the summer program until April 10. We are of course closely watching developments with the campus and COVID-19 and will make any necessary modifications. To learn more and apply click here.
Tune-Up Tuesdays will continue to be offered every week from 10am to 3pm. Our coaches are available every Tuesday to help you with your model, marketing, fundraising, stakeholder engagement, or anything else you have questions about! Complete the Coaching Intake Questionnaire and email it to Kisha Logan, Do Good Accelerator Manager at email@example.com. Then, schedule your Tune-Up Tuesday Coaching session by clicking here.
Institute staff support a number of instructors on campus with their social impact and innovation, philanthropy and service-learning courses through guest lectures, coaching, and workshop facilitation. Staff will continue to support these instructors and their students as they continue the Spring semester virtually.
As students' professional development needs and interests evolve, we are excited to announce we have evolved our Philanthropy Fellows program to something that supports and advances current student passion and nonprofit needs: Impact Interns!
This professional development and leadership pipeline links Do Good students to project- and social impact-based summer internship opportunities with alumni organizations and partners of the Do Good Institute. At a time when there is uncertainty in our day-to-day as well as the job market, we are excited to offer programs that support both our students and partners who want to make a difference, now.
Do Good Institute staff can be reached by email. If you are unsure who to reach out to, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you connected to the right person.
Want to Do Good Now?
We’ve put together a short list of resources if you want to help others during this difficult time.
- Support Fellow Terps. The University’s Crisis Fund has recently been depleted due to an influx of requests from those experiencing hardship as the result of the COVID-19 crisis. Help UMD provide immediate assistance to students who are facing unanticipated financial struggle by donating here.
- Support Local Nonprofits. Help local organizations that provide direct services to vulnerable populations affected by coronavirus. A list of organizations in the DC metro area, as well as ways to help them, can be found here.
- Virtually Volunteer. Idealist.org has curated a list of COVID-related volunteer opportunities that people can do virtually. Explore the various different opportunities and find a way to help here.
- Read and share stories of hope and resilience to break up the news cycle.Or, do you have 5 minutes (or 14 Days) to spare? Narrate a short story from your phone and help 40,000 learn to read. Learn how here.
- Donate Money. Consider donating to these national organizations focused on supporting those hardest hit by the crisis.
- Donate blood. With thousands of blood drives across the country canceled because of the outbreak, the American Red Cross and America’s Blood Centers announced on Tuesday that the US is facing a “severe blood shortage”. The organizations encouraged anyone who is healthy and eligible to give blood or platelets, to make an appointment to donate through the Red Cross.
- Stay active. Help you and your family and friends stay active! Check out live streamed fitness and yoga classes here.
- Reach out to family and friends. Use this time at home to check in with a loved one you haven’t seen in a while. Schedule a virtual coffee date or happy hour and use your extra time to check in with people you care about.
- Have grace. Recognize that this is a hard and stressful time for many people. Keep this in mind as you navigate throughout your day and offer people the benefit of the doubt, understanding that we are all doing the best we can. This includes yourself! Be patient with yourself and others and be kind to each other. We are all in this together.
- Support those around you. Whether this is ordering takeout from a local restaurant, or buying art from local artists or businesses you know aren’t operating as usual, make the effort to offer support if you can.
Are you leading an effort to Do Good now? Do you know of one? Connect and share with us on social media @DoGoodatUMD.
Are you looking for additional support to enhance or launch a COVID-19 related project? Thanks to our passionate and dedicated supporters - including The Rothschild Foundations, CTIA Wireless Foundation, The Neilom Foundation, The Richard E. & Nancy P. Marriott Foundation, and other generous donors - we have funding and resources available to help you help others, now.
For more COVID-19 information from the University and the latest updates, please visit umd.edu/virusinfo.
*Last updated April 23, 2020, 12:30pm