Ways to Help People in Need in the DFW Area

The mass closures of gathering spaces and schools, coupled with suspensions of many businesses and public services, are necessary measures to manage the COVID-19 pandemic; but they have greatly impacted our most vulnerable neighbors and created a crippling amount of stress and uncertainty for those who are now without employment. Here’s a list of organizations, agencies, and ministries in the Dallas-Fort Worth area that are actively serving people with needs. Some of them are asking for volunteers. All of them urgently need donations. Please feel free to suggest other organizations in the comments section. I will try to keep the information here updated.

  1. Abide Women’s Health Services, located in South Dallas at 2612 MLK Jr. Blvd. Dallas, TX 75215, exists to improve birth outcomes in communities with the lowest quality of care. They are accepting diapers (sizes 3, 4, and 5), wipes, and baby clothing. Please call 972-474-6311 or email info@abidewomen.org to schedule a drop off time, or visit their Amazon wish list to make an online purchase.
  2. Austin Street Center cares for the most vulnerable homeless men and women in Dallas. It is anticipating an increased demand for its services to feed the hungry, provide a safe and healing environment, and restore dignity to those who need assistance. SUPPLIES THEY NEED: Hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes and gloves. Any cleaning supplies used for disinfecting surfaces. FINANCIAL DONATIONS GREATLY APPRECIATED: Give here.
  3. Aunt Bette’s Pantry at St. Philip’s School & Community Center, located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Dallas, Texas 75215, provides pantry staples in a food desert region near Fair Park. It’s one of the few food pantries still operating during the pandemic and has modified its operations in accordance with current social distancing guidelines. It has instituted a drive-through process by which the clients drive up, remain in their car, and their pre-packed groceries are loaded in the car for them. This effort to limit contact and create a safer process for all involved creates a more labor-intensive process, and they are in need of additional volunteers to help with the physical requirements of this new process. They need assistance packing boxes, stacking boxes, and loading them into the cars. An estimated 12 volunteers are needed for each shift to work in multiple areas inside and outside of the pantry. Call 214-753-5600 or email Angela Page at apage@stphilips.com for more information. VOLUNTEER at the food pantry here.
  4. CitySquare Food Pantry has an increased need for volunteers and would like anyone who is already a CitySquare volunteer to help if able. If you’re an existing volunteer and not considered high-risk (as defined by the CDC), please email Kiara Jones at kijones@citysquare.org to learn more. They have instituted a temporary halt on adding new volunteers, so if you are new to CitySquare you would not be eligible. You can donate to their emergency fund here.
  5. Communities Foundation of Texas is a safety net for social-service agencies in Dallas. It specializes in understanding donors’ charitable intent and connecting them with organizations making a positive difference. CFT has established the North Texas Community Response Fund that will be used to support community needs in response to COVID-19. Donations to this fund will be used to provide support for organizations that work with people and communities who may be most affected by COVID-19. This will likely include support for individuals and families who need access to food and/or healthcare, supplementing lost wages and/or housing costs or support for agencies who work with vulnerable populations such as seniors and/or homeless. CFT has also set up the Get Shift Done for North Texas Fund. The COVID-19 crisis has severely impacted the North Texas service industry, resulting in many displaced workers. The crisis has also caused an increased number of individuals experiencing economic insecurity to seek support from nonprofits, especially in terms of hunger relief. Nonprofits now require many more volunteers to help fulfill our community’s escalating demand, yet the nonprofit volunteer base has decreased as community members, especially the elderly, are encouraged to stay home to keep well. Money raised for the Get Shift Done for North Texas Fund is intended to employ the affected/displaced hourly workers in the hospitality industry to perform shifts (preparing and delivering meals for those in need) for nonprofit organizations and institutions trying to meet community demand during the COVID-19 crisis. Once urgent needs related to COVID-19 subside, any remaining funds will be used to support nonprofits that provide workforce development and hunger relief.
  6. Cornerstone Community Kitchen serves the homeless, indigent, and now even families seeking a meal during this time. In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, Cornerstone has shifted to take-away meals, and this has changed what they prepare. Their pantry is filled with items that are great for serving in a cafeteria setting but not a take-away lunch. They also are experiencing more visitors with the closing of so many locations that help the homeless. Please consider donating food items. See the Cornerstone Kitchen link for a list of items that will be needed for Cornerstone to continue to assist those who need a meal. If you would like contribute financially, you can do so through Cornerstone’s website.
  7. Crossroads Community Services is a large food bank and food bank hub. They not only provide direct consumer assistance, but also help to stock many community food pantries throughout the region. VOLUNTEER by clicking here. SUPPLIES THEY NEED: hand sanitizer, wipes, protective gloves, etc.; medium-sized boxes for family food boxes (14” W. x 11” D. x 9” H. is a good size), clear box-sealing tape. Drop off at 4500 S Cockrell Hill Rd Dallas, TX 75237. Call (214) 560-2511 or email info@ccsdallas.org for more information.
  8. The Dallas Morning News supports 23 local charities and is raising special funds to provide for needs created by the COVID-19 crisis. To see the list of charities or to donate, go here.
  9. Genesis Women’s Shelter & Support provides housing and support to women who are experiencing domestic violence. It is experiencing a massive increase in crisis calls right now, and there are no beds available. It provides 3 meals a day for all 125 of its shelter clients, but due to the coronavirus outbreak, it has had to send home many of its kitchen’s staff. They desperately need every kind of donation right now – monetary, meals, and in-kind. All the ways people can give can be found here.
  10. Meals on Wheels of Dallas has an urgent need for drivers to deliver meals to homebound seniors, as many of their volunteers fall into the high-risk demographic group and are unable to deliver meals at this time. Volunteers can deliver as little or as often as their schedules allow. If you are willing to step in, you should start by creating a volunteer account. Because a background check must be completed before you can begin volunteering, please go ahead and set up your account! Go to https://volunteer.vnatexas.org/Registration. Complete the form by creating your account. (Hint: selected password must have at least 10 characters.) Complete ONLINE training (Due to the Coronavirus, on-site training has been suspended.)
  11. Minnie’s Food Pantry normally serves 5,000 individuals every calendar month. With extended school closures, many people out of work, and the fact that many items are not available or accessible in local stores, it’s serving a higher number of families served than usual – about a 39% increase in clientele. Find out how to donate food items or money here.
  12. Network of Community Ministries is is a non-denominational, community-based organization whose mission is to care, coach and empower neighbors in need across 14 zip codes. It is looking for volunteers to help deliver food to individuals who are self-quarantining. Volunteers would need to pick up a package of groceries from the center in Richardson and drop it off on peoples’ doorsteps. To keep everyone as safe as possible, all volunteers are being asked to sign-up here. Call (972) 234-8880 for more information. You can also donate here.
  13. North Texas Food Bank is considered critical infrastructure and is remaining open. According to Dallas County officials, approximately 50-70% of the people in North Texas using food pantries right now are new clients. The need is so great that the Food Bank requested support from the Texas National Guard. Donate money to the food bank here.
  14. OurCalling is a faith-based organization that leads the homeless to live a healthy and sustainable lifestyle by building lasting relationships and making disciples on the streets. They have seen a huge spike in the number of people seeking services. At the same time, there has been a great reduction (an 80% reduction in just this first week of COVID-19 restrictions!) in food donations. They are asking for help to provide for our homeless neighbors. Give here.
  15. SafeHaven is a domestic violence service provider in Tarrant County. It houses 164 women and children in its Fort Worth and Arlington shelters. Like Genesis Women’s Shelter, it is experiencing a surge in hotline calls, and its shelters are full. It urgently needs undesignated donations at this time to keep families safe. Please donate here.
  16. Union Gospel Mission is a shelter for homeless women, men, children, and veterans. With the COVID-19 outbreak, the City of Dallas is depending on UGM to help the Dallas homeless population practice social distancing by having them “shelter in place,” meaning UGM will be housing all of their residents for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. These efforts will increase the costs of ministry operations significantly. UGM will be serving more meals, giving out more supplies, using more paper goods, increasing the load on their utilities, and finding more ways to occupy their guests. They need your help to meet the rising demand for services. In addition to an increased financial need, please also consider in-kind gifts. They need an adequate supply of hand sanitizer, soap, gloves, face masks, wipes, and disinfectants. For monetary donations, click here. For more information about in-kind donations, call (214) 637-6117 or email info@ugmdallas.org.
  17. Wesley Rankin Community Center provides education and resources to drive community transformation in West Dallas. SUPPLIES THEY NEED: Non-perishable food items for senior citizens in their community. 3100 Crossman Ave, Dallas, TX 75212, (214) 742-6674.
  18. The Wilkinson Center Food Pantry can also use donations of items in greater demand than usual. SUPPLIES THEY NEED: baby formula, adult diapers, kid’s snack foods, and other kid-friendly nonperishable food (cereal, peanut butter and jelly, tuna, etc.), reusable grocery bags. You can also purchase items from the Wilkinson Amazon Wish List.

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