In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Americans and world citizens are banding together in small groups and at the institutional level to provide mutual aid.
[This article has been updated as of March 25, 2020.]
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Hundreds of mutual-aid networks are popping up across the country as volunteers double down on efforts to help get their communities through the pandemic.
One centralized place to find out what resources are available near you — including childcare, mental health, resources for health-care providers, and more — is a growing Google Docs database maintained in part by the Radical Communications Network.
In Portland, around the nation, and around the world, mutual aid finds fertile ground
Have a bike and want to help? BikePortland.org is pointing Portland, Oregon-area volunteers toward the PDF Covid-19 Mutual Aid Network (@pdxcovid19mutualaid), a collective of groups offering delivery of goods to marginalized people and communities.
Beyond Portland, grassroots activism is taking root nationwide.
• Shareable Magazine notes that communities are creating shared online signup sheets and Facebook groups for people in need of child care, sanitary supplies, labor exchanges, social connections and other needs, in Philadelphia, Oakland and Ann Arbor, and also more widely around the world using Facebook groups.
• Arts groups in San Francisco are creating live-steaming and online events, and safety-net programs for arts workers of all sorts who are suddenly out of work thanks to California’s “shelter in place” order.
• There’s even an international community of 3D-printer owners who are printing out replacement valves for worn-out hospital respirators.
For a larger list of grassroots mutual-aid groups popping up across the United States, please consult the activist website It’s Going Down.
You can help get safety gear to first responders
A nationwide network has popped up to scrounge for desperately needed personal protective equipment, or “PPE.”
#GetMePPE is a gateway to a decentralized approach to finding stockpiled N95 breathing masks and other equipment “from garages, cell biology labs, and warehouses around America.”
Source: Buzzfeed News
Grocery stores are making space — and time — for the most vulnerable
One catching trend around the United States is preferential treatment of senior citizens and others with health risk factors at grocery stores.
In Maryland, for example, many stores are allotting an hour or two after opening for exclusive access by vulnerable groups.
Source: Baltimore Sun
New partnership provides childcare for first responders
Children of first responders from Long Beach, California are being looked after as their parents battle the novel coronavirus.
“In a hastily stitched-together partnership, hospital chain MemorialCare and two Southern California Boys & Girls Clubs have joined to provide childcare,” reports the Orange County Register.
Source: Orange County Register