Want to help your community during the Covid-19 pandemic? This is a collection of resources about stopping the spread of Coronavirus and setting up mutual aid. The Commons Librarians will update this page as more resources emerge.
The unfolding Coronavirus pandemic seems to be shifting the world on its axis. It’s compelling and concerning and it calls all of us to change our behaviours significantly. There is a lot of information out there – about how to stay safe, protect others, prepare for isolation, change work practices, and so much more. The updates are constant.
Take some time to step away from social media and the news to breathe and ground yourself. Checking in with ourselves in the present moment makes us all more able to deal with the challenges coming our way.
As your Librarians we want to keep you informed while minimising information overload! Stay tuned for more Commons collections of resources on Coronavirus and campaigning, community organising and creative activism. We start our series with this post on various community care resources.
We have to start defending each other in ways that will change us, and make it possible for us to change the world. – Jonathan Neale
Stopping the Spread
Flatten the Curve: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update and Thorough Guidance, Julie McMurry – Regularly updated and drawing on global information
A guide to self-isolation or quarantine with Covid-19, Dr Wendy Burton & Dr Kat McLean, GPs can – Australia, 10 March
Information for People With Disabilities and Chronic Illness
Emergency information for NDIS participants and families about the Coronavirus – Australia. Regularly updated resource relevant to people with disabilities, carers and families. Includes NDIS information, easy read guides, and explanatory video.
5 Things To Know About Coronavirus And People With Disabilities, Andrew Pulrang, Forbes – 8 March, US. For full details reading the article but here’s a summary of the 5 things:
- The people most often cited as being at serious risk are largely, by some definition, people with disabilities.
- It can be harder for disabled people to take prudent steps to protect themselves from the coronavirus outbreak.
- COVID-19 coronavirus threatens not only disabled people’s health, but their independence.
- This outbreak has the potential to add new perspectives and urgency to a number of long-time disability issues.
- You can help a lot just being aware and sensitive to the specific risks and obstacles faced by disabled people in an outbreak of contagious illness like COVID-19.
Coronavirus Anxiety: Key Advice for Chronic Illness Patients from Health Psychologists, Susan Jara, Creaky Joints – US, 3 March
Information for Families
The family lockdown guide: how to emotionally prepare for coronavirus quarantine, Celina Ribeiro, The Guardian – 13 March
What can parents and children do to survive self-isolation, and each other?
- Begin on the same page
- Be truthful
- Set up structure
- Keep moving
- Get things done
- Give each other space
- Stay in touch
- Learn from the experience
Coronavirus with a baby: what you need to know to prepare and respond, Karleen Gribble & Nina Jane Chad, The Conversation – Australia, 13 March
Amazing Educational Resources – Education Companies Offering Free Subscriptions due to School Closings
Online Skill Ups – Educational options from 350.org for Climate Strikers and other young people getting active.
Community mobilizations for mutual aid and medical solidarity have formed in as many spaces as the new coronavirus (Covid-19) has spread. From continent to continent, people have innovated and navigated through information suppression, governmental inadequacy and unpreparedness as well as supply shortages in panic-economies with global financial markets plummeting.
Don’t panic. Organize.
– Mutual Aid Disaster Relief
When Every Community is Ground Zero: Pulling Each Other Through a Pandemic, Mutual Aid Disaster Relief – US
Decolonizing Community Care in Response to COVID-19: Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic responsibly and Indigenously, Jade Begay, NDN Collective – US 13 March
Everyday People Supporting their Community through Covid-19 – Australia 13 March (and regularly updated). Includes:
- Tips on reaching out and a template for letters
- Safety in the home and self isolation
- Protecting people’s health and immune systems
- Providing food, medication and other supplies
- Offering to run errands
- Avoiding boredom during isolation
- Mutual aid definitions and articles
- Self-assessment and Screening guides
- Organisations to support
- Comics and other alternatively formatted resources
Networks of support are springing up rapidly! Find or Add a Group at #ViralKindness, view the Australian COVID-19 Mutual Aid Database, or try Helpful Neighbours or the Global Community Mutual Aid Coronavirus Response Map.
- What is a Covid-19 mutual aid local group?
- What does a Covid mutual aid local group/volunteer do?
- Where are the local groups in my area?
- Setting up your own local group
- Managing Requests
- Creating your leaflets
- How to run your meetings online
- Safeguarding and Security
- How to avoid spreading the virus
- Templates and other useful materials
Coronavirus Community Planning, the Hearth – US, March
Pod Mapping for Mutual Aid, Sydney Rebel Black – US, 9 March
How to Set Up a Phone Tree, South Australian Country Fire Service – Australia
Coronavirus: These neighbours are showing the rest of us what community spirit looks like, Yay Cork – Ireland, 11 March
Coronavirus and community activism, Jonathan Neale – US, 6 March. This article draws lessons from the community response to the HIV epidemic and outlines key justice issues and organising opportunities that are likely to emerge around COVID-19.
Countering Racism, Ableism and Classism
When Xenophobia Spreads Like a Virus, NPR (podcast and article) – US, 4 March
Why Pandemics Activate Xenophobia, , Vox – US, 4 March
Be prepared to interrupt racism with these tips from All Together Now – Australia
‘The Cripples Will Save You’: A Critical Coronavirus Message from a Disability Activist, Charis Hill, Creaky Joints – US, 6 March
On Panic Buying, Sam Wallman and Miroslav Sandev – Australia, 10 March
How to Keep the Greater Good in Mind During the Coronavirus Outbreak, Jill Suttie – US, 10 March
- Look to the heroes
- Stay calm and focused
- Show gratitude
- Remember our common humanity and show compassion
Balcony singing in solidarity spreads across Italy during lockdown – Italy, 15 March
Online flirting, workouts and dance parties – China, 16 February
How to make a home gym from household items while self-isolating, Elle Hunt, The Guardian – 18 March
Grounding Meditation, Starhawk – US
A Meditation for Feeling As Safe As You Reasonably Can, Rick Hanson – US
Irresistible Podcast (previously Healing Justice). In addition to longer episodes featuring interviews and discussion there are numerous shorter episodes with a range of healing, reflective and grounding practices. Also listen to the podcasts on Covid-19, Coronavirus: Wisdom from a Social Justice Lens and ‘Should we cancel?’ Coronavavirus, travel & organizing – US, 7 & 12 March
Finding Steady Ground, Daniel Hunter and Pamela Haines – US. A bundle of resources put together when Trump was elected President, which are also highly relevant to this moment. See the website for full details, here’s a summary of suggested commitments:
- I will make a conscious decision about when and where I’ll get news — and what I’ll do afterwards.
- I will make human-to-human connection with another person and make sure we stay in motion. (Obviously modify what connection looks like to fit the pandemic circumstances).
- I will pray, meditate, or reflect on those I know who are being impacted by oppressive policies, and extend that love to all who may be suffering.
- I will read, listen to, or share a story about how others have resisted injustice.
- I will be aware of myself as one who creates.
- I will take a conscious break from social media.
- I will commit to sharing with others what’s helping me.
Creating a Home Retreat: Finding Freedom Wherever You Are, Tara Brach, Jack Kornfield, Trudy Goodman. Includes a sample schedule, multiple guided meditations, and half day retreat video.
* Please contact the Commons Librarians if you have a resource to contribute.
See other COVID-19 related posts: Progressive Framing of the Coronavirus Pandemic and Coronavirus is a historic trigger event and it needs a movement to respond and Pandemic Resources for Progressives from Australian Progress. Digital Campaigning: Start Here has details of a number of online tools relevant to campaigning while physical distancing is in place. More articles coming soon.
Campaigning is care too! Many people are also stepping into action to advocate around the complex justice issues at this moment. This Australian crowdsourced and evolving guide created by people campaigning on issues related to the COVID-19 response. It’s intended for organisers and campaigners looking for ways to lead an anti-racist and intersectional response.