CoronaFriend: Connect your street, support your neighbour
A new initiative called CoronaFriend (https://www.coronafriend.com/) has been launched by a group of UK tech companies to help people left isolated by COVID-19.
Designed to support the overwhelming community response to the virus, CoronaFriend provides volunteers with a simple and easy way to assist elderly and vulnerable neighbours.
The team behind CoronaFriend were particularly inspired by media coverage of people who came up with the idea of using leaflets as a way of identifying people in need so that help can reach them.
CoronaFriend has created an interactive map of the UK, using Ordnance Survey's OS Open Zoomstack mapping tool, which allows individuals to take responsibility for a particular street or area of their neighbourhood. By tracking activity on the CoronaFriend map, people who want to support their communities can easily identify where other volunteers are already active and, importantly, see where help is still needed. This reduces duplication of effort and ensures that no-one is overlooked in these difficult times.
Volunteers can use the platform to download a ready-made leaflet to print off and post through neighbours’ letter boxes, offering help with things like shopping and cooking or to simply arrange a chat to combat loneliness. CoronaFriend are asking that all local business and supermarkets that are open to help the cause by printing leaflets (available to download at https://www.coronafriend.com/) and displaying them in their shops so that people who don’t have printers and want to help can still distribute leaflets.
Conceived by Orla Shields (CEO of Kamma) and Phil Hewinson (CEO of Would You Rather Be), CoronaFriend was developed with the support of a number of companies including Kamma, Would You Rather Be, Orange Doodle, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Ordnance Survey and Geovation. Individuals from all of these organisations and others collaborated outside of their day jobs to turn the idea into reality in less than a fortnight.
Orla Shields, CEO of Kamma, said: “In the face of the appalling human cost of the COVID-19 virus, the outpouring of community support has been so inspiring, and we wanted to do what we could to help. I am so proud of my team for working tirelessly to use our expertise to bring structure to the massive volunteering effort, allowing volunteers to more easily provide their support where it is needed.”
Please contact Chris Morgan for enquires on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07824819547
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Would You Rather Be (www.wouldyouratherbe.com)
Would You Rather Be helps people discover, get into and flourish in their dream career. People answer a series of easy and fun questions, powered by a sophisticated algorithm, that helps them discover the careers they would find most satisfying. Would You Rather Be is an early-stage tech startup with a big vision to help everyone in the UK find a career they love.