A kindness pandemic


The Coronavirus lockdown has caused an unprecedented need for hundreds of thousands of vulnerable Kiwis to stay socially connected and to get a hand with urgent supplies, meals and picking up prescriptions.

 

 

Enter Support Crew, an established online help roster that activates a community to remotely coordinate meals, supermarket shops, a friendly phone call or any other help that’s needed during isolation, from anywhere in the world.

“Over the last three years, we’ve helped more than 4,000 Kiwis coordinate support needed for aged care, hospitalisation, mental health, new babies and unemployment,” Support Crew Co-Founder, Kelly Banks says.

“We now critically shift our focus to bring Kiwi’s together to unite against Covid-19.”

The free online platform enables anyone to set up a private support page.

By inviting friends, family and neighbours to their page, they can then manage and coordinate help with meals or errands and sharing updates.

The platform’s Give Store allows Kiwis in insolation to provide remote help for vulnerable family members to receive ‘heat and eat’ meal deliveries, supermarket vouchers or fruit and vegetable boxes.

Since launching in 2017, Support Crew has coordinated over 2,500 requests for help and organised 1,850 meals, 400 trips to appointments, 200 hours of cleaning, 110 social visits, 220 dog walks, 5,200 messages and over 65 errands.

During the global pandemic, the organisation has seen an unexpected number of expat Kiwis organising help for their loved ones in isolation.

“We have many stories of generosity, from the expat in the UK who organised $500 worth of food and petrol vouchers for her immune compromised sister; to finding a loan portacot within hours,” Kelly says.

A significant number of vulnerable Kiwis find online shopping confusing and overwhelming, so nominating a family member, neighbour or member of the community as a designated shopper is proving vitally helpful.

That’s why Support Crew is now matching people who need help with people in the community who are close by and want to help.

Sign up to help or sign up someone who needs help.


 

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