QA COVID-19 Community Response Update #1

Dear Residents of our wonderful community,

Thank you for participating in the Queen Alexandra Coronavirus (COVID-19) Assistance Initiative.

Our mission – Zero deaths in our communities from COVID-19.  Wouldn’t that be fabulous??? We are very inspired by the AMAZING response from residents like you!!!

What has been accomplished so far?

  1. The Initiative was advertised over the last week by:
  2. We received >70 responses; the majority were to volunteer/help or receive updates.  What a caring community!!!!
  3. We have already received requests for assistance, which we matched with volunteers on a 1-1 confidential basis. 
  4. We are individually validating everyone that participates in 1-1 assistance, to prevent scams that are unfortunately exploiting the current situation. Please keep safe from scams.
  5. This creates a very useful network in our community - preparing us for what needs might come.

Plan for assisting individuals requesting assistance

“Chance favors the prepared mind”
—Louis Pasteur, pioneer of the "Germ theory of disease"

  1. As time goes on, and until the pandemic is overcome, there may be increasing need for isolation. We hope that anyone (even us and you) that becomes at-risk and/or has cold/flu symptoms, will enjoy the comforts of home with support from the committee.
  2. If you need assistance, now that your information is in our list, please just email us ([email protected])
  3. When an individual requests support, we will match them with a volunteer on a confidential 1-1 basis.  The information provided in the forms helps us tremendously – for example matching the tasks, risk groups, and location of people.  If you generously offered to assist, we will contact you personally when the need arises.
  4. Every volunteer working with other residents (e.g. to deliver) is provided with personal protective equipment, surface disinfectant, and ways of controlling exposure. 

Plans for decreasing risk of transmission in our neighbourhoods

  1. By next week, we will start pooled-shopping. The concept is to have 1 individual do grocery shopping for ~5 others, but in a highly-controlled (virus-safe) manner. Pooled shopping is a great way to have everyone get their needs fulfilled while supporting local business. Approximately 66% of responders to the form said they were likely, or maybe, interested – so we figured “why not try”? 

    More information on this to come next week.
     

  2. If you have any questions about risk-groups and/or strategies to control exposure, please email us at [email protected], as we have several specialists on these topics (also resources from Canada, Alberta and WHO are at the bottom of this email). Do you think most people know the tricks for safe shopping, such as:
    •  Wash hands and cell phones often, often - kill the virus
    • Keep a distance from others 
    • Keep mouth closed in public - reduce unnecessary entry into body
    • Keep airways wet - allows the mucus membrane to reduce the number of virus particles that reach the cells that it infects 
    • Keep hands in pocket and away from items and your face; only touch what you will buy
    • Assume anything in public that you touch could be contaminated and clean it  
    • Go to 1 shop only per trip - permits time to clean between possible exposures
    • Plan ahead and shop for several weeks - reduces time spent in public 

    If not, please let us know your suggestions for ways to help inform everyone.

    Good video on how to shop in a safe manner:

     

  3. We NEED YOUR IDEAS for additional strategies to reduce risk of  COVID-19 transmission in our neighborhood. Please give your own ideas, or look around at what other neighborhoods, cities, or countries are doing and email us with any ideas you have!!!

D. Plans for keeping us socialized and raising our spirits

  1. As of Monday March 30, and every night, we will make noise at 7:00 PM for our healthcare providers and other essential workers. Step outside on your steps, balconies, sidewalks to erupt in cheers and applause to salute the city's hard-working health care and essential workers on the frontlines.  Here are examples of others doing this in Vancouver vancouver-healthcare-workers-coronavirus_ca_5e7a8c24c5b620022ab2ce40
  2. We NEED YOUR IDEAS for additional strategies to keep our residents in good spirits.  Please email us any suggestions for social activities. 
  3. These times can be emotionally and physically hard on people.  Although we cannot provide medical or mental health assistance ourselves, we can help find resources to address specific challenges for you or your neighbours. If in doubt, please reach out.  Our mental health advocate on the team suggests “There is no right or wrong way to feel and that it is going to fluctuate daily, sometimes even hourly. Setting expectations for the day should be relatively low, and celebrating little things is good. (You showered and ate a meal! Thats 5 stars!) Also a good reminder to everyone is that you can only control a few things in times like these so take time to daily focus on your breath, your diet and your movement.”

E. Plans for supporting our local businesses

  1. We would like to create a resource of local businesses and their availability for supplying covid-safe goods, for example through deliveries. Any volunteers that want to help pursue this initiative, please let us know.

With safest wishes to you and your families,  

The QA community covid response team


Extra Resources:

If you feel sick, please go directly to on-line risk assessment and 811
https://myhealth.alberta.ca/Journey/COVID-19/Pages/COVID-Self-Assessment.aspx

AHS COVID-19 and your mental health 
https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/assets/info/amh/if-amh-mhpip-disaster-pandemic-covid-19-and-your-mental-health.pdf

Reliable way to keep up with numbers in Alberta
https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx

Reliable way to keep up with numbers in Canada
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/health-professionals/epidemiological-summary-covid-19-cases.html

Canada and WHO advice on how to reduce Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks.html#wm

If you want to understand the biology of this virus and why it is “different” than some others you know, this is a good article
https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2020/03/biography-new-coronavirus/608338/?fbclid=IwAR207QfT5YousxoehgxlsRZXfVq9M8zARkDn8ILBnbNDwyRgXybKzgK3wqE

If you want to understand what the infection will look and feel like