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  • Michael Weinberg

Company Contributions for COVID-19

Updated: Mar 2, 2021

A successful, well-intentioned business knows that supporting people in need is important, especially the people who helped that business reach success. Public image is also an important factor, as giving back to the community is part of why some businesses are seen more favorably in the public eye. During COVID-19, when our society seems to be drowning in unprecedented challenges, the public looks to the businesses that normally keep life moving. Fortunately, many businesses in all types of industries are adapting to common hardships and are making (or have made) moves to help. Here are just a few examples of how major companies are doing good during the pandemic.



Retail

Walmart has been committed to working with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to set up drive-through and stand-up testing sites. The enormous retail company also is donating a value of over $35 million to organizations dedicated to fighting the coronavirus. Target is dedicating $300 million to help its employees and $10 million in relief funds to organizations battling the spread of the virus.


Joann Fabrics is donating supplies and is demonstrating online how to make masks for everyone who needs one. The company’s goal is to make a mask for everyone in America.


Nike and Adidas are working to produce thousands of masks and face shields in an effort to protect healthcare workers as they tirelessly care for COVID-19 patients. Nike has donated thousands of shoes created specifically for healthcare workers who have to be on their feet all day. Nike has pledged over $25 million to the fight. Adidas has donated over $4 million to relief funds and is offering a 40% discount to frontline workers on its products.


European luxury brands like Dior, Balenciaga, Yves Saint Laurent and Prada are funneling their efforts toward making masks to distribute to medical workers.


The supermarket chain Kroger has formed the Kroger Zero Hunger Zero Waste Foundation, which is providing $3 million to help people who have limited access to food.



Auto

The auto industry has been hit particularly hard by the pandemic, which keeps more people at home. Instead of manufacturing vehicles, these companies are creating medical supplies.

General Motors is using its plants to produce and distribute thousands of ventilators, masks and hospital gowns. Ford is also working to produce tens of thousands of ventilators, which many COVID-19 patients need to recover.


Nissan is producing masks for frontline workers, and the motor company is also deferring payments for owners for three months.


Honda is donating $1 million to help provide food to those in need in North America. The company is aiding in ventilator production and is donating personal protective equipment (PPE). Also, Honda has donated 10 specially designed minivans in Detroit to help transport COVID-19 patients and healthcare workers.


Ferrari and Lamborghini are both doing their part to help produce masks for medical workers.



Technology

Google has dedicated $800 million to help small businesses and public health organizations. Most of those funds will be given in the form of ad space to small businesses (about $510 million).


Google and Apple, with a perhaps controversial idea, are developing software that can help notify people via their mobile phones when they’ve come physically too close to a person infected with COVID-19. This practice is called “contact tracing.”


Similarly, Microsoft is collaborating with the University of Washington to create an app (called CovidSafe) that will aid in contact tracing. The app also keeps users updated on important pandemic and health information.


Microsoft is also supporting health research and nonprofit organizations with artificial intelligence technology with the AI for Health program.



Media

HBO offered free episodes of TV shows for people who are self-isolating.


Spotify currently is hosting its Spotify COVID-19 Music Relief project, which is donating to organizations that are financially supporting those affected by COVID-19 in the music community. The streaming service has a donation acceptance page where users can make monetary contributions, which Spotify will match up to $10 million.


Spotify also has set up an “Artist’s Fundraising Pick” that will show up when users navigate to artists’ pages for more information. What’s more, Spotify has donated directly to public health organizations, has donated ad and platform space for COVID-19 news and information and has created a “COVID-19 hub” to make it easy for users to find information about the pandemic.


Sony has created the Sony Global Relief Fund for COVID-19, which has committed $100 million to support frontline workers, education workers and students, and creatives in the entertainment industry.



These are merely a few examples of how brands can assume social responsibility during a crisis. If you’d like to make your own contributions to organizations spearheading the fight against COVID-19, check out our list of charities on Twitter.


As always, remember to stay home when you can, wash your hands and wear a mask if you do need to leave!





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