#GoodNews - Uniting in Service


Volunteers Serve North County Community from Afar

Author: “B” Hernandez, Development & Special Events Associate, Interfaith Community Services

Collage of Community Donations Shows Generosity

The combined stories experienced at Interfaith Community Services in six weeks are as big as North San Diego County and as unprecedented as the COVID-19 pandemic. Interfaith staff and volunteers are witness to the inspiring and creative ways our community has unified, proving sheltering in place isn’t always a passive existence, through their generosity from afar.

Stories include:

  • Families, friends, and faith members virtually gathering to place online orders of food and hygiene products. These same day deliveries fill our food pantry shelves to feed over quadruple the amount of people usually served in a day.
  • Young adults summoned home from college have donned masks and gloves and joined us onsite to bag basic supplies for their neighbors who never imagined they would need Interfaith’s support.
  • Recurring volunteers are arriving early to deliver a warm, wrapped breakfast burrito to those most hungry in the morning.
  • Growers are harvesting and sharing whole foods to keep us healthy.
  •  People from businesses and governments, small and large, are connecting with Interfaith to make masks, donate dollars, provide products, and inspire volunteerism.

We are fortunate to see our community be whole during a crisis that could separate us if we allow it to.


Recovered COVID-19 Patients Donate Plasma to Help Patients Fight the Virus

Author: Michaela Mitchell, Media Coordinator, San Diego Blood Bank

Friends David and Tim Donate Plasma

San Diego Blood Bank recently issued a call for recovered COVID-19 patients to help treat patients fighting the virus. While COVID-19 has no proven treatment, plasma taken from those who have recovered may help patients currently fighting the virus. This is because the plasma has developed antibodies against the virus. Experience with historical infectious diseases, including the Spanish flu, sudden acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (MERS), and influenza H1N1 have shown that convalescent plasma can be a beneficial viral treatment and prophylactic medicine.

Many recovered COVID-19 patients have stepped up to help patients in critical condition.

  • Robert Spears first heard of convalescent plasma when a friend on the east coast received plasma as an investigational new drug to treat COVID-19. Robert was excited for this unique opportunity to help others with this virus.
  • Friends, David Rodman and Tim Callan, contracted COVID-19 on a group ski trip. When Tim heard about the opportunity to donate, he called up David and brought him to the donor center. Together, their donations can help as many as 8 people fight this virus. To date, the Blood Bank has sent 17 units to help patients fighting COVID-19.
  • Alena Silberman, a New York City resident, recently came to San Diego to visit family in Solana Beach. She believes she may have contracted the virus prior to landing in San Diego and plans to donate more convalescent plasma locally and in New York. 


“I think so many of us are eager to be of service at this time,” said Silberman. “As soon as I learned about the plasma donation process I applied right away. It felt like a no-brainer to me.”


Individuals can donate convalescent plasma if they have a confirmed positive laboratory test and no symptoms for the last 28 days. People with a subsequent confirmed negative test can donate after 14 days of symptom resolution.

San Diego Blood Bank has created a form where people can submit their contact information to be qualified for convalescent plasma donation. People are encouraged to fill out the form even if they have not yet been tested since antibody tests will be available in the future.

To submit contact information to be qualified as a convalescent plasma donor, visit www.sandiegobloodbank.org/donateplasma.

Alena donates plasma to help others

Robert was excited for this unique opportunity to help others with this virus.