A beloved Arlington tradition, Neighborhood Day brings communities together to enjoy the great outdoors and strengthens ties between neighbors.
In our currently socially-distant world, Neighborhood Day 2020 (May 2) is swapping out the traditional outdoor get-togethers and focusing on how Arlingtonians can build community while staying apart.
“Arlington has been showing that every day is Neighborhood Day as we navigate these difficult times and people step up to do whatever they can to help our community,” Arlington County Board Chair Libby Garvey said. “We thank everyone and hope that residents will recognize this unusual Neighborhood Day by doing something extra – for example, deliver food, set up a buddy system with their neighbors, or donate – to help us continue to come together despite the current physical distance we need to keep between us.”
Connect with Your Neighbors
Whether you have already-established relationships with your neighbors or want to take this opportunity to start connecting with them, take the time to find a buddy.
The Arlington Community Corps (ACC), an initiative set up by residents to support one another to get through the pandemic, is helping people create a “buddy system” where neighbors check in on each other to ensure they have what they need. To get involved, residents can request help or sign up as a buddy.
Here are some other ways to reach out and stay updated about what’s happening in your community:
- Find out your civic association and reach out to your fellow civic association members.
- Live in an apartment or condo? Find your tenant association and connect with neighbors in your building.
- Join NextDoor for questions, flyers, news and other information from your neighbors.
- Join the Arlington Neighbors Helping Each Other Through COVID-19 Facebook Group for updates and ways to help during this time.
Contribute to Your Community
With dozens of nonprofit organizations in our area, there are endless opportunities to give back and help support the larger community.
Arlington Community Assistance Network Donating to Organizations (Arlington CAN-DO) is a new COVID-19 era initiative committed to help local businesses be better positioned to return to normal operations, pay their employees and stay afloat. On the CAN-DO website, you can buy a restaurant or retail gift card, donate to buy a neighbor lunch, register an organization to be listed on their site.
Volunteer Arlington has also launched the COVID-19 Care for Community webpage to connect community members with opportunities and needs in the Arlington community.
Here are some ways you can contribute to helping your neighbors in need this Neighborhood Day:
- Arlington Free Clinic: Virtual bilingual volunteers who speak Mongolian or Amharic. Sign up here.
- Aspire! Afterschool Learning: Virtual volunteers to read with their students or help them with their schoolwork online. Sign up here.
- Bonder and Amanda Johnson Community Development Corporation (BAJCDC): Drop off toilet paper, paper towels, dish detergent, laundry detergent and bleach Monday – Thursdays, 10 a.m.–4 p.m., 2229 Shirlington Road, Suite A, Arlington.
- Bridges to Independence: Sign up here to volunteer to make “Anti-Boredom Bundles.”
- Doorways for Women and Families: Email Joy Myers at JMyers@DoorwaysVA.org to volunteer for “Drive Thru Deeds” every Friday, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. to donate/deliver gloves, masks, toilet paper, cleaning wipes, disinfectant and cleaning sprays, paper towels, hand sanitizer, adult Tylenol and thermometers.
- Million Mask Challenge: Sew, organize or donate. Learn more.
- New Hope Housing: Sign up here to volunteer to make bagged lunches.
- Northern Virginia Family Service: Drop off donations of diapers (especially larger sizes), cleaning supplies (Lysol Spray, wipes, all-purpose cleaner, bleach, etc.), hand sanitizer and antibacterial soap, grocery store gift cards, new children’s underwear and socks) to NVFS Head Start Center in Arlington, 2920 S. Glebe Road, Arlington. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange delivery.
- Salvation Army: Create “Red Shield Boxes” for seniors and vulnerable populations and drop off at 518 S. Glebe Road, Arlington Mondays, 1-4 p.m. Learn more.
- Shirlington Employment and Education Center: Create 30 bagged lunches. Call 703-933-1101 for coordination.
- Woodland Hill Apartments: Donate hand soap, masks, and cleaning supplies. Drop off outside management office, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., 610 Carlin Springs Road, Arlington, VA 22204.
- AFAC: Donate to the Arlington Food Assistance Center.
- AHC Inc.: Donate to the AHC Emergency Response Fund.
- APAH: Donate to the Resident Emergency Fund.
- Arlington Thrive: Donate to the Arlington Emergency Relief Fund.
- A-SPAN: Donate here to address the short-term and long-term impacts of COVID-19 on their clients.
- Edu-Futuro: Donate to the COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund.
- Meals on Wheels: Donate via mail to “Meals on Wheels of Northern Virginia, Inc.”, PO Box 40203, Arlington, VA 22204.
- OAR: Donate to the OAR Direct Services Fund.
- Phoenix Bikes: Donate to the Phoenix Bikes Fund.
- Read Early and Daily (R.E.A.D): Donate $7 to the Give A Book, Nourish A Mind Campaign.
- Real Food For Kids: Donate to the Real Food for Kids Support Fund.
No matter how you decide to give, your contributions this Neighborhood Day week will directly help your neighbors in need.
After Virginia Governor Northam’s stay-at-home order ends and we are once again permitted to safely hold gatherings, residents are encouraged to plan a neighborhood event to reconnect. Ideas for events include block parties, picnics, sporting events and more. Go to the Neighborhood Day webpage for more ideas. For guidance around timing for your event, contact Laura Barragan.