Here’s how to be a coronavirus hero and help struggling families in Pittsburgh

Photo by Lisa Cunningham. Courtesy of Pittsburgh City Paper.

By Pittsburgh news partners

The novel coronavirus is changing how we live and work in very disruptive ways.

These organizations are helping to provide food, money and other assistance to those impacted by the shutdowns.

Here are some ways you can contribute:

Food assistance:

Donate to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank as it feeds local families during the pandemic. Or volunteer.

Volunteer for 412 Food Rescue. The food waste nonprofit is in need of volunteers.

Donate to Arnold’s Tea via Cash App ($ARNOLDSTEA2020) as they’re preparing and handing out free meals daily.

Support the Hugh Lane Wellness Foundation in making care packages and delivering goods to LGBTQ+ folks in need. To coordinate donations, email

Restaurant Workers Mutual Aid Fund is collecting food donations at the Irma Freeman Center.

Feeding the Frontline PGH is a grassroots fundraiser supporting local restaurants and giving food to frontline workers.

Restaurant and Food Service Emergency Fund is a GoFundMe page, aiming to distribute $150 to qualified workers.

Financial assistance:

Donate to the United Way Worldwide COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund. Call 211 to inquire about getting local assistance.

Give to the Emergency Action Fund to help regional nonprofits respond to community needs in the pandemic.

Donate to the Pittsburgh COVID-19 LGBTQIA Emergency Relief Fund, created by SisTers PGH. It will prioritize members of the LGBTQ community who often experience disproportionate rates of violence, poverty and housing insecurity. The fundraiser has a goal of $100,000 and will begin taking applications for relief on March 20.

Give to the Bloomfield Garfield Corporation Emergency Fund, collecting donations for crisis fund that helps people with rent and other things.

Helping affected workers and businesses:

Tip directly to service workers whose livelihoods are hurting with this virtual tip jar.

Support local artists through the Pittsburgh Artist Emergency Fund, which provides up to $250 to help with rent, bills, food and other essentials.

Donate refunds you receive from canceled performances, at the request of the Pittsburgh Stage Employee Bailout, if you can.

Donate money to help hourly workers who won’t get paid during the COVID-19 shutdown.

Donate money to a fund that will provide small stipends to restaurant workers in the Greater Pittsburgh region. The group hopes to provide $150 to workers who apply on an as-needed basis.

Donate money to a fund that will provide small stipends to restaurant workers in the Greater Pittsburgh region. The group hopes to provide $150 to workers who apply on an as-needed basis.


Donate breast milk to the Mid-Atlantic Mothers’ Milk Bank. Visit the site, call 412-281-4400 or email to learn about the donation process.

Help the Homeless Children’s Education Fund. The organization is struggling to provide the care and structure its vulnerable students need. Donations can be made here.

Beverly’s Birthdays is collecting much-needed items for parents including diapers, formula and canned goods. Drop off anytime in a box outside at 9799 Laurel Ave, North Huntingdon, PA 15642 or send donations here.

The Western Pennsylvania Diaper Bank is looking for help to continue regular distributions of diapers by requesting monetary donations. Another option is to order diapers online on Amazon to be delivered to 201 N. Braddock Ave., Suite 124, Pittsburgh PA 15208.

While its center is closed, Foster Love Project seeks financial assistance to help with requests for diapers, formula, wipes, feminine products, cleaning supplies and more. Donate here.


Check in on a senior buddy or help if they get sick as part of the Lawrenceville/Bloomfield/Garfield “Buddy” System.

Drive for South West Meals On Wheels needs more volunteers, as many of the volunteers are seniors who have been encouraged to stay home. Kitchen help is also needed.

Call to check on seniors you know who may be feeling isolated or fearful. Also, follow CDC and WHO guidelines to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Send a note or a card that will be shared with residents, patients and team members of the Presbyterian SeniorCare Network. Visit for details.

Volunteer to assist with deliveries and to make friendly phone calls to seniors. 


Donate blood or volunteer to help with the blood shortage.

Donate personal protection equipment to Pittsburgh-area medical providers, and medical providers can request what they need. This group will do pickup and dropoff.

Donate personal protection equipment; disinfectant cleaners, sprays or wipes; or hand sanitizer of any size by filling out this form or sending an email to the office of the Allegheny County executive at

Donate to the Western Pennsylvania Fund for Choice, which funds access to safe abortion care for low-income people in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia.

The Mental Health Support for COVID-19 Frontline Workers is a document of therapists in the area offering four free appointments for frontline workers. Providers can email to have their name added to list.


The Woman’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh is asking for donations of toilet paper, paper towels, hand sanitizer, Clorox wipes and hand soap. Please contact Kristin Brown at Monetary donations are always appreciated. Click here.

Make face masks with the help of Abram’s Nation. The group is pivoting resources to create free face masks for organizations in need. To make the impact even greater, the Abram’s Nation team has created a sewing template and, while supplies last, will provide the fabric to those who have access to sewing machines and can join the cause to help with production. Organizations in need or anyone who is able to assist with production in the greater Pittsburgh region can contact to get in touch with Rose and her team directly.

Donate gloves, masks, disinfecting wipes or spray, a forehead thermometer, hand sanitizer and non-perishable food items to POWER House, a residential facility providing addiction treatment for women in Allegheny County. Secure pick-up/drop-off of donations can be arranged by calling 412-760-4602 or emailing

Casa San Jose is collecting funds for coronavirus response to support Latino families in Pittsburgh.

Notes of encouragement are requested for City of Asylum‘s exiled sanctuary writers, who are now physically isolated in Pittsburgh, as well as isolated from their countries. Send emails to

Help animals in need by making a monetary donation or donating pet supplies to any of the following: the Humane Animal Rescue, the Pittsburgh CatAnimal Friends or Hello Bully.

Let your neighbors know if you’re making a grocery trip and ask if they have any essentials you can pick up and leave at their door.

The Incline, NEXTpittsburgh, Pittsburgh City Paper, Kidsburgh and PublicSource collaborated to build this resource. Email with suggested additions to this list.