A Slice of Hope: Twitter connects strangers during COVID-19 crisis

When the new coronavirus became an issue in the United States, I decided to start tweeting out the latest statistics. In the weeks that followed, I inadvertently turned myself into a regular source of information during the pandemic — often being featured in Twitter’s COVID-19 moments highlighting the latest global information. As a result, I got hundreds of new followers looking for coronavirus content. And yes, most of what I was sharing would be considered “bad” news.

Because of that, I’ve worked to include as much positive as possible — including regular updates on recoveries. But I felt compelled to try to use the platform and current situation to do something beyond information sharing.

My thought? Let’s use Twitter to connect with people who might need a helping hand during these trying times. I’m not in a position to change their circumstances, but I can help provide a distraction for a few hours by sending dinner their way. I decided to put out daily posts, find someone who could use a pizza and then ship food.

I worried whether it would work, but it certainly did. Over the last few days, we shipped pizzas to Oklahoma, California, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, New York and Arkansas. No issues at all (and a shout-out to Domino’s!)

Dr. Adriana Castro in Miami saw what we were doing and decided to pitch in! She sent me a note saying she wanted to pick up the tab for a dinner.

Her pizzas went to a father and son in Little Rock. After learning they’d have a meal coming their way, I got this note: “I truly do appreciate it. These have been trying times. I just buried my mother this week. She was the first healthcare worker from JRMC in Pine Bluff to pass from the coronavirus, so we do really appreciate it.”

That wasn’t the plan, but damn…

To everyone who says there’s too much negative content, misinformation and just plain “dumb stuff” on social media, you’re right.

But it can also be used for good — allowing us connect and unite. 🙏🏼

And maybe, provide a slice of hope.


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