As the global COVID-19 pandemic is upon us, a number of mutual aid groups have started forming across the country. The groups aim at providing community support to those who are more at risk from the virus: be it help with running errands or cooking.
COVID-19 is a novel virus most affecting people’s respiratory systems. While in around 8o% cases the symptoms will be mild, it can lead to death. It is estimated that 2-3 people out of a hundred will die. This can easily mean hundreds of thousands of deaths in the UK alone.
We must do everything we can to prevent this from happening.
The virus, while very unlikely to kill us all, already proved to be pretty lethal to,even more developed healthcare systems. It fills hospitals within days and uses-up resources, making it very difficult for healthcare workers to provide all needed help. This, in turn, increases the death toll.
The Tory government is apparently more concerned with making sure the economy won’t collapse rather than with saving people’s lives. So, here is some advice for folk:
People who are at higher risk of COVID-19 related death or life-changing illness
That is, those of us who are older, have pre-existing health conditions, or their immune system is otherwise compromised: please stay home if you can. If you live in the area covered by the Mutual Aid groups listed below, get in touch with them if you need help. None of the listed below groups will ask you for money or other form of payment.
HIV positive folk: please have a look at this link.
People who are at lower risk
Remember that you need to do everything you can to stay healthy. This is not exactly to protect your own life, as you already have more than a fair chance of survival. It is, however, essential to protect others, and it is your responsibility to your community to do all you can to achieve it.
This means washing your hands and generally sticking to high hygiene standards of both yourself and your surroundings. It means you stay in if you are sick: even if you strongly believe you are not a COVID-19 carrier, it is a risk you should not take right now. If you can, stay in even if you are healthy. There is no need to take unnecessary risks.
It also means that you must cancel that gig you wanted to go to, or that holiday trip you were looking forward to. You must do this to protect the more vulnerable members of your immediate community and beyond. You also must ensure you don’t put an unnecessary pressure on the NHS, so that they can get on with their life-saving work.
Remember: that old lady you see on your grocery shopping, and that comrade you know who is suffering from a long-term illness: it is your job to protect them as much as you can.
Additionally let’s not forget about the homeless people, and others who can not self-isolate easily. If you can, share your resources with them.
If you want to know more about the concept of mutual aid and how it can work in the community, then we recommend this book.
UK COVID-19 Mutual Aid Groups:
We have done our best to include all already existing mutual aid groups below. If your group is not listed, or you set one up after this text’s publication, please get in touch and we will fix it. You can reach us either via our Facebook page, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note to people who keep submitting their groups to this list: thanks for your work, but we have one request: please, please, please keep the communication with us to FB direct messages and email only. This text proved very popular and we at Freedom are glad to be of assistance to so many communities, but it is also very difficult to keep on top of updates while monitoring email, direct messages, and the info coming via Twitter and Facebook comments. Help us to reduce the number of messages we are dealing with by checking if your group is listed already before getting in touch.
Also, yes we do know this list is very messy right now. We don’t have the time to deal with it due to the number of new groups we are processing. But hey, if anybody has the time to tidy it up and send it to us, please do!
- Battersea Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Lewisham Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Hackney Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Waltham Forest Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Newham Covid-19 Community Support
- Tower Hamlets Covid19 Community Support
- Southwark Mutual Aid Covid 19
- Islington COVID 19 Mutual Aid
- Lambeth Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Ealing Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Brent Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Haringey Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Havering Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Greenwich Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Barnet COVID-19 Mutual Aid
- Kensington COVID- 19 Mutual Aid (link to WhatsApp chat)
- City of London Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Hounslow Covid-19 Mutual Aid Group
- Camden COVID-19 Mutual Aid
- Volunteer childcare for Healthcare staff during school closures – Covid-19
- Biggin Hill – Self-isolating Assistance
- Twickenham & Richmond Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- London Borough of Enfield Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Redbridge Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Stroud Green Covid 19 WhatsApp group
- Norwood Junction Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Harrow Covid-19 Community Support
- Surbiton Coronavirus Community Response Group (CCRG)
- Merton Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Putney Coronavirus Community Support Group
- Newham Covid 19 Solidarity Group: 07496602149
- New Malden Covid 19 mutual aid
- Swiss Cottage COVID-19 WhatsApp group
- Northolt COVID-19 Mutual Aid
- Hammersmith Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Croydon Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Soho/Covent Garden Covid19 Mutual Aid
- Newham COVID-19 Action Team
Additionally, Hackney Boaters COVID- 19 Mutual Aid formed. You can join their WhatsApp chat here.
- Bristol Community Care (via Bristol Mutual Aid)
- BS1 Mutual Aid
- BS2 Mutual Aid
- BS3 Mutual Aid
- BS4 Mutual Aid
- BS5 Mutual Aid
- BS6 Mutual Aid
- BS7 Mutual Aid
- BS8 Mutual Aid
- BS9 Mutual Aid
- BS10 Mutual Aid
- BS11 Mutual Aid
- BS13 Mutual Aid
- BS14 Mutual Aid
Newcastle upon Tyne:
- Newcastle upon Tyne Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Arthurs’ Hill Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Byker Corvid-19 Mutual Aid
- Benwell and Scotswood Covid 19 Mutual Aid Group
- Gosforth Covid19 Mutual Aid
- Elswick Covid 19 Mutual Aid Group
- Heaton: Help Self-Isolators
- Kenton Corona Help
- Monument (City Centre) – Covid 19 mutual aid
- Jesmond COVID-19 Mutual Aid
- West Fenham Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- Blakelaw Covid 19 Mutual Aid
- Cooperation Birmingham COVID- 19 Mutual Aid
- Birmingham Community Solidarity: Coronavirus Response
- Solihull/Shirley/Chelmsley Wood COVID-19 Mutual aid group
- Southampton Coronavirus Mutual Aid Group
- Southampton Coronavirus (COVID19) Volunteers Network
- Southampton corona virus support group
- Clifford (Old Trafford) Neighbourhood Aid
- Blackley v COVID
- Greater Manchester Mutual Aid Network
- Woodley Stockport COVID-19 Mutual Aid Group
- Bury Mutual Aid Group
- Bramhall North Residents Covid -19 Community Outreach
- Heatons Covid-19 virus – self isolation neighbourhood outreach
- Corona Solidarity Levenshulme
- Hazel Grove Mutual Aid
- Whalley Range COVID-19 mutual support group
- Stockport COVID-19 Support
- Gatley Community Help Group
- Marple Covid19 Mutual Aid Group
- Marple Essentials Help
- Offerton & Great Moor COVID-19 community group
- Reddish Covid-19 virus – self isolation neighbourhood outreach
- Chorlton Coronavirus Community Response
- Didsbury, Withington and Burnage COVID-19 Community help
Forest of Dean:
South Darenth and Horton Kirby:
Haslingden and Helmshore, Lancs:
Blackwood/Oakdale area, South Wales:
Beverley, , East Riding of Yorkshire:
Hyndburn, inc Huncoat, Read, Simonestone:
Portsmouth & Southsea:
Southport & Formby:
Willenhall, Borough of Walsall:
Chichester, West Sussex:
Newcastle under Lyme and North Staffordshire:
Grimsby and Cleethorpes:
Rye, East Sussex:
Knottingley & Ferrybridge:
Mawgan & Lizard Peninsula, Cornwall:
Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire:
Saline & Steelend:
Holme Valley, West Yorkshire:
Meltham, West Yorkshire:
Slaithwaite Colne Valley:
Long Eaton & Sawley, Derbyshire:
- The Working Class
- Whiteinch & Scotstoun Glasgow Corona Virus Resilience Group
- Southside Self-Isolation Supporters
- Greater Govan Support Network
- Williamwood Community Support
- Glasgow Mutual Aid Group
Staines and Ashford:
Brentwood, Essex and surrounding villages:
East Bergholt/Holton St. Mary and nearby:
- York Covid-19 Mutual Aid
- York COVID 19 Volunteers Hub
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Clifton, Clifton Moor and Rawcliffe
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Skelton, Shipton and Overton
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – near Earswick Area
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Wigginton And Haxby
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – The Groves, Bootham and York St John
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Bishopthorpe Road and South Bank
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Bishopthorpe and Acaster Malbis
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Copmanthorpe and Bilbrough Top
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Askham Bryan, Askham Richard, and Bilbrough
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Woodthorpe, Dringhouses, and Askham Bog
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Acomb, Foxwood, and Westfield
- York COVID 19 Holgate and Poppy Rd
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Knapton, Rufforth, and Hessay
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Poppleton and York Business Park
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Heslington, Uni, and Badger Hill
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Dunngington and Murton
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Osbaldwick and Derwenthorpe
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Heworth, Tang Hall, and Layerthorpe
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Stockton, Holtby, and Warthill
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Dodsworth Ave and Birch Park
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Huntington and Monks Cross
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Strensall, Earswick, and Towthorpe
- York COVID 19 Volunteers – Fulford, Fishergate, and the Designer Outlet
New Quay, Wales:
Stoughton, West Sussex:
- Coronavirus Support Group for Workers
- Queercare provides assistance for immunocompromised, astmatic or otherwise at additional risk from COVID-19. You can also access useful resources and advice via their page. Queercare has volunteers nationally and is working on organising folk into more local groups and providing advice.A sign-up form is available here.
- Queercare have also finalised and had approved by medical professionals an initial list of principles and assumptions and a set of guiding policies for doing support work in, and in response to, the COVID-19 pandemic. You can access it here.
- A nationwide coordination page was set up: Covid-19 Mutual Aid – UK. Please follow them.
- In Scotland, you can join Scotland volunteer childcare for Covid-19 school closures.
- SWARM Collective has started a hardship fund for UK sex workers in financial crisis due to COVID-19. Please donate if you can.
- Cooperation Birmingham are fundraising for a mutual aid kitchen.
- Mayday Rooms in London closed until after Easter due to COVID-19 outbreak in the UK.
- Dundee Anarchist Bookfair has been cancelled.