Written by philippines

Written by Pepper Limpoco, Asia Community Developer

Looking for some ways to still create an impact while stuck in the couch? I’ve compiled some things that’ll definitely keep you productive despite the quarantine. I end all my points with action-oriented ideas, but fair warning that they’re all (of course) related to my organization, makesense! 

Just a quick disclaimer: many of us are privileged enough to continue working from home at this time and regard this quarantine as a minor disadvantage for us and our families. It is important that we are able to acknowledge this and be grateful for it. But it is even more important that we all adopt the mentality of collective action and find ways to contribute to social impact despite the hurdles we are facing. Now, more than ever, we all have a role to play. Enjoy the tips!

1. Create content

And not just any content – create content focused on innovation, social entrepreneurship, and positive social impact! Whether you’re a freelancer, full-time graphic artist, or any other occupation for that matter, now is the time to put together any type of helpful content and put it out there!

Maybe you’ve been holding back on starting a blog about composting, maybe you’ve been meaning to work on an infographic showing the waste situation of your city, or you’d like to try your hand at producing a podcast – well, this is your sign. I am literally telling you to do it! 😉

Don’t know where to post the content you’re planning to make? The Makesense digital platforms are here for you! Send our Communications Manager, Andy, an email at andrea@makesense.org if you’re interested to create something with us. Thanks to our amazing contributors, we’ve published some really cool podcasts and articles to date!

2. Engage in online discussions

It can feel a little lonely to be stuck at home all day, especially if you only have your cat or dog for company. It’s always nice to still feel part of something bigger. Makesense has Facebook groups in different communities around the world with active members who exchange tips on a variety of topics: whether it’s upcycling, plant-based dieting, reducing plastic, you name it! The community is made up of friendly and knowledgeable people.

Interested in checking out the online group in your city? Just search for “Makesense [insert your city here] Hotspot” in the Facebook search bar and click “join!” 😎

3. Organize a workshop for a social entrepreneur online

If you want to take your impact up a notch, then I’ve got the perfect thing for you. Now more than ever, we need citizens supporting their local social entrepreneurs who are trying to solve the bigger problems of society, especially in our healthcare system! These social entrepreneurs constantly need fresh new ideas and quality feedback from the very people they are trying to serve. This is where you come in!

We regularly organize a workshop called “Hold Up,” wherein people from various backgrounds and expertise come together to solve a specific social entrepreneur’s challenge. These challenges can range from dilemmas in their marketing campaign, to even their user experience. The good news for you is that we have a manual for organizing Hold Ups online! (Yes, you heard me right).

Who can organize Hold Ups? Anyone! Students, young professionals, and experts alike have organized Hold Ups all across Asia and the world in the history of makesense – we’ve organized more than a thousand of them (a real number, we kept track).

Interested in this methodology and looking to organize one? Feel free to contact me directly at patricia@makesense.org and I’ll get back to you with a date and a Zoom link.

4. Provide a safe space for those who are experiencing mental distress

This pandemic can definitely bring more mental stress to others and we can all use our extra time to lend a helping hand. Here are some resources that might help you:

5. Donate to institutions helping the front-liners

The second best thing we can provide front-liners (besides following their advice on personal hygiene and social distancing), is giving them financial resources or medical supplies for their hard work. I’ve compiled some institutions receiving donations in the Philippines, feel free to comment below if you know of others!

  • Ateneo de Manila University, alongside Tanging Yaman Foundation, Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan, and the Manila Observatory are receiving cash donations here.
  • Philippine General Hospital is receiving donations for surgical masks, N95 masks, and 70% Ethyl alcohol.
  • UP Medical Foundation is developing testing kits and the scientists are in need of funding of their protective equipment.
  • The Plaza Catering is helping feed medical front-liners and is accepting donations in cash or in kind here!
  • The Kaya Natin! Movement, in coordination with the Office of the Vice President is accepting donations for personal protective equipment (PPE) and food packs for medical front liners (they do not accept cash donations).

6. Join the makesense community

Donations and charity are imperative at a time like this, but can only go so far in the long run. More than our donations, we can further dedicate ourselves to educate our fellow citizens on the most crucial social impact issues that we are facing locally and globally.

The makesense community not only organizes and facilitates Hold Ups online for social entrepreneurs as I’ve mentioned earlier, but also dedicates their time and effort to run campaigns on the causes they care most about, share open-sourced resources with each other, and try to inform other citizens that they too have a role to play in making a more sustainable and inclusive world.

Donations and charity are imperative at a time like this, but can only go so far in the long run. More than our donations, we can further dedicate ourselves to educate our fellow citizens on the most crucial social impact issues that we are facing locally and globally.

Concretely, here are some things makesense ambassadors do online:

  • Organize Hold Ups for social entrepreneurs
  • Organize and moderate MKS Rooms (modified panel-discussions) for citizens interested in a certain topic
  • Organize, create content, and facilitate online campaigns to educate the public on certain topics 
  • Volunteer for online roles such as: 
    • Being the moderator for the Facebook group in their city
    • Translating tools (slides, manuals, etc.) into their local language
    • Writing articles on diverse topics

To close, I hope that some of these tips emphasize the fact that there is still a lot you can contribute even remotely and that there are platforms and communities out there who are simply waiting for you to join in! 

For any questions on the community or to express interest in joining the gang, don’t hesitate to send us a message on Facebook (facebook.com/MakesensePH) or send me a direct message at patricia@makesense.org.

Have fun, and don’t forget to wash your hands!