Driven by his own experiences living with an autoimmune deficiency, activist Jonah Liss launched a volunteer platform called Mediumize, centered around assisting high-risk individuals and COVID-19 carriers. The platform connects with individuals in need and recruits volunteers to run essential errands such as picking up groceries and medicine for them.
In January, Liss began closely studying the epidemic in China, fearing it would become a pandemic and spread to the United States. Weeks later, with the breakout in Italy, he predicted the COVID-19 pandemic would hit the U.S. in March and knew he wanted to help. Liss repurposed a tutoring business he had designed to launch Mediumize on March 13. Since then, he has spent hundreds of hours to make the platform easier to use and able to meet community needs and reinvested any tips he received from users back into Mediumize’s platform and advertisement.
Now, Mediumize takes a three-pronged approach to helping high-risk individuals and mitigating the spread of COVID-19: running essential errands across 151 cities, 16 states, and 3 countries; technology assistance with existing services like Instacart and Kroger Clicklist; and activism. Volunteers also complete acts of kindness such as making masks for grocery store workers, collecting and donating PPE supplies to hospitals, assembling care packages for essential workers, and compiling resources. Liss was incredibly inspired by the diversity of people who signed up to volunteer and consistency in their will to help others and take initiative to make sure high risk users’ needs are fulfilled in as safe of a way as possible.
Jonah believes that aspiring youth activists should not be discouraged from taking action themselves because of their age
| "If you see an issue in the world that you want to solve, you simply need to put in the work to make it happen," says Jonah.
As his idol Elon Musk said, "when something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.” This quote particularly resonated with Liss because he believes that if you find a cause important, you should do anything to make it happen regardless of the sacrifices that come with it.
Outside of activism, Liss enjoys playing tennis, public speaking, investing in the stock market with interests in both tactical day trading and risk allocation, and occasionally studying foreign markets.