Updated on the 1st of August, 2021
With the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, joblessness is increasing, and people are in need of help. This is particularly a problem in the US, but many others in other countries are also struggling, and it’s likely the number of people needing help will be increasing as the crisis continues. This isn’t going to be over any time soon, and the economic impacts are going to last even after vaccines have been widely distributed.
To that end, I’ve put together a list of different resources for people who are struggling to make ends meet. This is a mix of both ways to seek help, and ways to give help to those in need. I will update and re-post this at least once a week while the pandemic and associated economic fallout continue. This is currently mostly focused on the U.S., with some UK resources, but I want to expand it to cover anyone needing help anywhere if possible. There’s a lot here, and it’s currently not particularly organized, because I don’t currently have a system for doing so. I also haven’t included much about things like PPE crafting or distribution – this is mostly focused on aid relating to food, housing, and other things that currently require money.
Because of the duration of the pandemic, and the lack of help from the US government, many of these may be running out of resources, so please help if you can! Supporting each other in times of need is how humanity has gotten this far, and for those who have more than they need, now’s the time to give back to the society that made that wealth possible. If you want to start a mutual aid network in your area, here’s a guide on how to do that.
I think it’s worth mentioning that if you’re doing OK, and you want to help, contributing to mutual aid efforts is one way to do that. Actually contributing your time and labor, in whatever capacity you’re able, is also likely to be valuable. Many of the initial projects to help people survive the combination of a pandemic and the cruelty of a capitalist system were short-term efforts to deal with what most expected to be a short-term problem. The pandemic continues, and in case you missed it, climate change isn’t going to give us any breathing room. Mutual aid can’t solve all our problems, but it can help people survive, and it can be a tool for networking and organizing. That’s something YOU will need going forward, dear reader, unless you want to be entirely at the mercy of the billionaires and their endless greed.
If anyone has corrections or resources I’ve missed, please include them in the comments and I’ll add them in to the next round.
Twitter thread on resources for people facing eviction – share it around, and add to it if you have anything to add.
- From Bigdoorbrigade.com, who have done a great job pulling this stuff together. Look at this stuff, but check them out too, because they’ve got more on how to help, how to organize, and so on:
https://www.mutualaidhub.org/ – a map of mutual aid projects and requests around the United States. FYI, McAffee flagged this site as somehow worrisome. I’m not sure why.
https://mutualaiddisasterrelief.org/ – Mutual Aid Disaster Relief – solidarity, not charity. This is an opportunity to help, and by doing so you increase the odds that you’ll have help when the next climate disaster hits your region
It’s Going Down is a digital community center for anarchist, anti-fascist, autonomous anti-capitalist and anti-colonial movements. They have a list of mutual aid efforts focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic across the United States as well as some in Canada.
This is a US-based google doc with a huge amount of resources linked, from guides, to counter-propaganda, to existing aid efforts. Tactics and info are relevant across the board, most of the linked aid efforts are centered in the US.
Coronavirus resource list “This kit is a collectivized document that will be updated as more mutual aid projects and resources appear online. Recognizing that not everyone will have access to great internet to access some of these, I encourage you to apply these offline as well as online.”
COVID-19 Mutual Aid UK – Mutual aid resources in the United Kingdom
For those interested, Amy Goodman of Democracy Now did an interview with Dean Spade, who created Big Door Brigade.
- From my old stomping grounds – Mutual Aid Medford & Somerville
- Fool.com has some resources on legislation, as well as various programs that provide limited help to some people in the U.S.
- Boston Public Library has some resources:
The Human Network Initiative is a collaboration between Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. They have put together this collation of local and state resources
The Asian American Resource Workshop has created a wider ranging sheet of resources and mutual aid groups. It includes a lot of information on how to combat prejudice and xenophobia in this unprecedented situation
The folks behind the news site Boston.org have set up the Boston Helps network
A neighborhood group has been organized for Jamaica Plain and Roxbury, with similar groups in many Boston neighborhoods
Just outside of the city, communities like Cambridge have also seen mutual aid groups being set up
- Idea for action: Community garden set up by folks in South Seattle:With the physical and financial help of at least 15 other people, including the neighbor who offered the strip of space in front of his house to create the garden on 33rd Avenue South in South Seattle, Miller has started up a community garden on her block. Like the rest of the nation, Miller’s neighbors and friends have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, and she wants to help support those in need, during what’s proving to be a difficult and frightening time for many.
- BKShowsLove Emergency Fund for Hourly Workers (Brooklyn, NY)
Wildcats want to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has supported us so far! With your solidarity, we have raised just enough to take care of the basic needs of all 80 graduate student workers who were recently fired for grade withholding. Thanks to you, we have been able to rest assured that our rent, food, and other needs will be covered. Your donations also fed thousands of strikers and our allies on our month-long picket line and covered medical and legal expenses of those who were violently arrested by University of California police. This fund continues to be the foundation for our ongoing fight for a cost of living adjustment (COLA).
- Opportunity to help: Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) COVID-19 Emergency Appeal:
MAP staff are already doing all we can to support local medical services who are serving Palestinian communities living under occupation and as refugees. We have already provided emergency hygiene supplies to 1,200 vulnerable Palestinians living in Gaza. We anticipate further need for an emergency medical response in the weeks and months ahead. Please help us be there for Palestinians during this crisis with a donation today.
Your donation can help pay for:
- Hygiene Kits
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Medicines and medical supplies
- Help finding food in the United States and an opportunity to help: WhyHunger.orgThe WhyHunger Hotline refers people in need across the U.S. to food pantries, soup kitchens, summer meals sites, government nutrition programs and grassroots organizations, especially those that provide access to nutritious foods and nutritional support services.
- Gig Workers Collective has a LONG list of resources for struggling gig workers in the United States, both in general, and state-by state
- TipJar Hospitality workers emergency fund (UK):
The chancellor’s announcement now helps millions of hospitality workers, but sadly still so many are not protected by this as they don’t have contracts, were paid off pay roll or dismissed by employers before the announcement. We decided to take action to help those that are still hurting. We have the technology, contacts & understanding to make a difference quickly.
We have created ‘The Hospitality Workers Emergency Fund’ to allow the kind hearted, altruistic & caring UK public to donate to an emergency fund to help the most vulnerable & in need in our sector during this time. Our mission was always to champion hourly paid tipped workers, we never imagined in this way…
- This journalist furlough fund is trying to help journalists who’ve seen their pay stopped for one reason or another. You can donate here, or follow a link to request aid
Here are just a few other places to donate that I’ve seen floating around. There are likely more local efforts where you live.
Nationwide: UNITE HERE’s fund for impacted workers
- Chicago-based remote mental health services on a sliding scale with some pro-bono options.
- Inclusive Action for the City has a relief fund for street vendors in LA
- Growing the Table: Multi-Ethnic Coalition for growing and distributing culturally relevant produce for under-resourced communities (based in L.A.)
- Mutual Aid NYC
- Restaurant Workers Community Foundation has a fund to help restaurant workers
- Chester County COVID assistance network (Facebook)
- Michigan City mutual aid
- Career Onestop on getting unemployment benefits in the U.S.
- AFL-CIO federal and state resources for workers (U.S.)
- Info on applying for Medicaid and CHIP (U.S. healthcare assistance)
- U.S. Government “Help with bills” site
- Rental assistance by zip code
I’ll keep updating this as I find new stuff, and as always, let me know if you come across things I’ve missed, and please consider donating to my patreon, as I’m barely making ends meet myself!