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Stories of solidarity, resources, and a message from ONE EU during COVID-19


The crisis we are currently experiencing is affecting every person on the planet. COVID-19 is impacting our lives, our local neighbourhoods, and the global community simultaneously. However, it has also inspired us to act — locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally — to support everyone in need and show that we are ready to look out for each other.

If COVID-19 is teaching us that viruses don’t respect borders, it’s also true that solidarity doesn’t either — and this is where you come in. Together, let’s use our voices to thank healthcare and other key workers, demand that the most vulnerable people — everywhere in the world — are looked after, and to defend everyone’s right to have access to healthcare and life-saving vaccines. We can still be vocal — even from home!

Thank you for being a part of the ONE community. We’re all in this together.

Stories of hope from our community

We asked ONE’s global community for their stories of hope and solidarity. Here are two from our community.

Two years ago I decided to leave the hospital to work as a public health practitioner, because I believed keeping people healthy is a matter not only of healthcare workers, but of all of us. Everyone has a chance to make a difference, and we need everybody more than ever now to care for each other’s health. If anything, these days have shown me that extraordinary people are capable of extraordinary acts of love, solidarity, and companionship to make this happen. And in the end, this is what makes a difference. You are making a difference.
— Jef V., medical doctor and ONE Youth Ambassador

I am a teacher in Spain and I love what I do. The lives of hundreds of teenagers are touched by us in some way or the other, so we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to teach our students that happiness is more than having money or a good job. Happiness is about taking care of other people, minding about the person next to you, trying to make the people around you feel loved.
— Maria C.A., ONE Supporter

How you can help locally

In Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Greece, and France, people are gathering on their balconies to clap for key workers. Check out whether a similar initiative is also happening in your country. You can also check out Avaaz’s list of #ViralKindness Facebook groups and find your nearest group to identify ways to support your local community in your country, such as shopping for food, picking up medicine, and dog walking.

Your local Red Cross website will have information about pecuniary donations and/or blood donations. And check out your national government’s website to find out how you can support locally, through volunteering or donating.

If you’re in Belgium, Brussels Help is a trilingual solidarity platform supported by all local Brussels authorities. It allows individuals to offer their help or to ask for help during the health crisis, including making a phone call, going shopping, going to the pharmacy, and sewing face masks.

The World Health Organization has set up a COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund to help ensure all countries are prepared to fight the pandemic, especially those with the weakest health systems. Here’s more information.

Resources and recommended reading

The European Commission has a page dedicated to the COVID-19 response, and has put out some key facts to fight disinformation around the EU and COVID-19.

We’ve put together a list of resources for at-home activism — from ways to stay involved from home, to online activism classes and online museums.

You can also catch up on our latest blog coverage: Here’s why we need a global response to this global pandemic — and how we can achieve that. Here are key facts to know and what we can learn from the pandemic. We’ve also rounded up 5 major health organisations taking action globally against COVID-19. And our CEO Gayle Smith explores the need for collective global action.

For the latest information on COVID-19 and the situation in your country, please visit your government’s homepage and/or your national health ministry website.

For regular updates from ONE in Brussels, follow us on Twitter.

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