Leading in the Time of Coronavirus

Coronavirus is causing illness, death and economic hardships for so many people in the United States and across the globe. But in this time of challenge and uncertainty we are seeing incredible leadership as well, from the health workers meeting the needs of their patients on the front lines to businesses developing new approaches to meet the essential needs of their customers to organizations finding new and creative ways to make an impact.

This type of leadership and creativity is essential for today’s world. Now more than ever, we all have a role to play—whether it is at work, in your community or in your home. We can all make a difference in the fight to end coronavirus, even if it means just staying home.

Some are using the power of their voices to make a difference. Everyone from Idina Menzel to Jason Alexander to John Legend are stepping up and using their influence to support causes and get out key messages. Others, including the Entertainment Industry Foundation, CAA Foundation, Spotify, SB Projects, Stage 29 Productions, Boom Broadcast Media Relations, and so many more, are playing a critical role in extending valuable COVID-19 messaging.

Using your voice is something we can all do with our families and communities and in our social networks. It’s vital to use your voice to share important messaging from reliable sources like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and your state and local health officials.

You can also provide your support to many worthwhile nonprofit organizations, which are making a difference in communities and across the nation. Here at the CDC Foundation, we have been bringing together support from individuals, philanthropies, corporations and organizations to have real impact. But we cannot do so without our donors and partners, who are leading the charge.

From “Homefest: James Corden’s Late Late Show Special” to “Saturday Night Seder” to “Fox Sports Esports Madden NFL Invitational,” organizations and individuals have been highly creative in connecting people during our time of separation while also supporting our CDC Foundation response efforts. Support raised is being used to address a variety of critical efforts, such as equipment for frontline health workers, hiring surge staffing to advance the work of state and local health departments and much, much more.

Corporations also have stepped forward with critical support. For instance, Facebook helped the CDC Foundation promote our Facebook Fundraiser and provided a $10 million match to double donations. To date, the fundraiser has exceeded the match and raised $6.2 million from more than 180,000 donors.

Other businesses are also taking part. TikTok donated $15 million toward hiring surge staffing for state and local health departments. We have also received support from many large, medium and small businesses as well as more than 38,000 individuals for our “All of Us: Combat Coronavirus” crowdfunding effort, hosted by Charidy, which has brought in more than $43 million in response support.

And there is more on the horizon. On April 18, Lady GaGa is teaming with Global Citizen’s “One World: Together at Home” event on April 18 that will feature celebrities like Elton John, Paul McCartney and Andrea Bocelli. The CDC Foundation is proud to be a regional partner for this event. Our CDC Foundation team also is excited to be a benefitting organization for the NFL Draft-A-Thon coming up April 23–25.

We are grateful to everyone who is lending their voice to the fight against coronavirus. We are all important in this fight, and we all need to do our part. And, sometimes doing your part means staying home to enjoy these special events. We are all in this together—and together our impact is greater.

Laura Croft is the vice president for advancement for the CDC Foundation.