Help Save New York With These Innovative COVID-19 Relief Efforts

Published May 4, 2020

Photo by A24.

What do you think of when you think of New York? Until a few months ago, the answer to that question probably ranged from the cliché (bagels, Times Square) to the niche (the fat aggressive rat that haunts the 42nd street subway station, the way Lincoln Center looks when you walk out of the AMC theater on a snowy night). Now, weeks into its dark fate as the epicenter of America’s coronavirus crisis, whatever New York you loved is probably more nostalgia than reality. But just because you can’t leave your apartment doesn’t mean you can’t make the New York of your weirdly vivid pandemic dreams come true. In other words, it’s time to give back to the city that has given us so much. Here, we’ve rounded up some of the New York-iest fundraisers for coronavirus relief.

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Bid on Uncut Gems’ Bedazzled Furby at the A24 Prop Auction

What could speak more to the dissociative daze quarantine than the bewildered, roving eyes of a gem-encrusted Furby, dangling from Adam Sandler’s fingers like from those of a powerful, vengeful God? Maybe it’s Toni Colette’s personalized cult mat, or the hottest in Swedish death cult-wear. But whatever A24 statement prop makes you feel held, you can get a chance to literally hold it by bidding in A24’s prop auction from now until May 20th. As if that news wasn’t enough to momentarily quell everyone’s collective urge to scramble around their apartment ceiling, 100% of the proceeds from the auction will go to four New York-based charities aiming to alleviate strife in communities hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis: FDNY Foundation, Food Bank for New York City, NYC Health + Hospitals, and Queens Community House. Help shed some light in these dark times by owning the titular light from The Lighthouse—batteries (and cabin fever) not included. 

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Head to Cannes…from Your Couch

You can take the film festival out of Tribeca but you can’t take Tribeca out of the film festival. Tribeca Enterprises and Youtube have partnered to create We Are One: A Global Film Festival. The digital festival will start May 29th and last for 10 days, during which audiences will be able to access programming not just from our beloved Tribeca Film Festival, but from festivals around the world. The Berlin, Cannes, and Venice film festivals are just a few that cinephiles can experience by moving from their kitchen to their living room—no motorboat required. Audiences will be able to support COVID-19 relief efforts by donating directly to a number of local and international organizations that the festival will benefit, including the World Health Organization. 

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Pixelate a Few Flowers

With Mother’s Day coming up, check out “Our Flower Shop,” where New York-based designer Jonathan Cohen is arranging digital daffodils and pixel peonies. Flower shoppers can choose from Cohen’s seven hand-drawn arrangements and add a personal note with the included card—or, if you’re particularly picky when it comes to picking flowers, Cohen offers a custom floral design option to create something entirely your own. Hydrangeas over tulips aren’t the only choice you’ll have to make: 30% of every purchase goes to one of four New York-focused charities, from A Common Thread to Feed the Frontlines NYC

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Get Inside New York’s Hottest Club

Both a literal and figurative community-center, the Lower Eastside Girls Club has been catering to the girls and women of Manhattan since 1995. With all the Club’s programming gone online, they’ve cordially invited any and everyone to “Join the Club” and get involved with a series of virtual events to support one of the most inclusive, inspirational institutions NYC has to offer. Like any good New York club should, this place has everything from guided meditations to feminine-focused film festivals. There’s no question that in another life you’d wait in line around the block to get in here, so take advantage of the best social distancing has to offer.

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See the World Through Andy Warhol’s Eyes

Until May 6th, Christie’s auction house invites everyone to take a peek through Warhol’s frames, auctioning off pieces that look past his classic pop-art vision and into the world beyond. With 60 unique photographs capturing everything from the tulips of Park Avenue to the beaches of Montauk, Andy Warhol: Better Days captures a New York we all know, love, and miss. But with proceeds from the auction being dedicated to COVID-19 artist relief funds, those so-called better days feel more like a glimpse into a hopeful future, rather than a reflection of a bygone past.