Knowledge Base: https://www.notion.so/Pandemic-Volunteers
Source Code: https://github.com/hantuzun/pandemic-volunteers
Help with Covid: https://helpwithcovid.com/projects/441-pandemic-volunteers
The COVID-19 crisis overwhelms healthcare systems all around the world. One of the critical bottlenecks at hospitals is human resources. Doctors, nurses and staff need to be working hectic schedules without a break for months, risking their lives.
When layman people are asked to volunteer for helping the fight against COVID-19, they show up in large numbers as evidenced in the US, the UK, India, Italy and more. On the other hand, these volunteers do not show up before being subject to a clear call.
We wanted to create a catchy volunteering initiative that people will take pride to carry its armband or even retweet on Twitter. Being shared on social media platforms heavily, we hope to register millions of volunteers and save thousands of lives.
What it does
Pandemic Volunteers is designed to encourage people to sign up for volunteering. We also get registrations from partners that could need volunteers or that could help volunteers. Hospitals, health departments, NGOs, volunteering groups, corporations could apply.
Once we get a volunteering application, the staff of Pandemic Volunteers schedules interview with the applicant.
If in the interview, the applicant's motivations are in aligned with working with one local partner, we match them up.
If an applicant has immunity against SARS-CoV-2 they could help at hospitals. If they have medical credentials, they could become a hospital ambassador for our international research team curating the latest studies to the doctors in a hospital, becoming their contact point for the latest research and questions about COVID-19 Learn more.
In case there are no partners near the applicant, the applicant will be given a choice to join of the teams:
- Patient Support Team: Remote or in-person (Requires immunity). Triage, training, and helping with the needs of patients
- Healthcare Support Team: Childcare, pet care, shopping, eating and other needs of healthcare workers
- Elderly Support Team: Childcare, pet care, shopping, eating and other needs of the elderly
If the applicant is the first member from a neighbor for a team, they will be given remote trainings and guidelines in written and recorded video formats.
If there is already volunteer(s) in the neighbor of the team applied, they are being interviewed by their neighbor team lead.
Learn more at our knowledge base: https://www.notion.so/Pandemic-Volunteers-cf5a155708614c3fa77f00d93bdd02a1
How I built it
It's an open-source Ruby on Rails project. Have a look: https://github.com/hantuzun/pandemic-volunteers/
We are using Heroku and PostgreSQL in the production.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
I am really proud of the whole experience of working on this project and making it a reality step by step.
What I learned
We learned a lot from doctors, volunteering organizations and various mentors.
- There is a dire need of various volunteers to help medical systems around the world.
- There is a need to focus on the outreach for volunteering groups because they are too busy solving their problems.
- The most vulnerable people we want to help; patients, busy doctors, the elderly would not be able to or want to a platform we could develop to register their needs.
- Volunteering groups prefer to use the tools they are accustomed. For instance volunteers in the UK usually use Google Spreadsheets and Whatsapp chat groups. Groups in different countries will have different preferences.
These insights led us to pivot and create a platform that targets volunteers, targets them on a global scale, matches them to partner organimations or hand them guidelines afterwards.
What's next for Pandemic Volunteers
We are aiming to form quite competent operations, social media strategy and public relations teams. Then we want to reach to hundreds millions of people around the world and register millions of volunteers.
Once we tackle the COVID-19 pandemic in 2022 or so, we will prepare for the next pandemics as a global and powerful NGO.
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