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Times of hardship call for those who are able to step forward and make a positive impact. Whether you’re an essential employee, a celebrity, an artist, a business leader, or just a community member, you’re an integral member of the social fabric and have the opportunity to make a difference. By working together, the community, and on a larger scale, society, will not just survive the pandemic, they will thrive. 

Everybody has some degree of social influence. If you’re someone who has the privilege of having a high degree of social influence, now is the time to leverage it for social good. What exactly does this entail? At its core, the maximization of resources, be they financial or otherwise, is a vehicle for social change. To make these changes possible, you’ll need to look at ways to best allocate financial, social, and human resources to make the world a better place. 

When we think about people with great social influence, oftentimes celebrities come to mind, but this doesn’t mean that they’re the only ones capable of initiating and influencing change. It just happens that artists in the entertainment industry have historically played a major role in cultural change, such as by unifying audiences during divisive times or by normalizing life-saving behaviours. At this point societally, audiences and communities expect artists and companies to take a stand on issues that matter, so social good has become a core value in their business.  Meaningful philanthropy should never be an afterthought. 

There are a great number of social issues out there, many of which are interconnected. It can admittedly be overwhelming to narrow down your list, but focusing on too many areas will make it difficult for you to see the impact that you’re making. Choose one or two areas to focus on and then reflect on how you are uniquely positioned to make a change. When it comes to choosing a cause, it’s important to find something that incites a combination of both anger and hope, as that combination of emotions is often what drives action. 

In times of crisis, the future is uncertain for many people. If you have the ability to donate, there are funds to help those who have lost their jobs and income. There are also niche funds that get a little more specific if you wanted to target the reach of your mutual aid efforts. On an even smaller consider continuing to pay your own home care workers such as nannies and cleaners; even if you don’t change the world for everyone, you can still change the world for someone.