March 2020: There are many sources for COVID-19 information (please follow Ottawa Public Health for the latest updates), but we've put together a few key points below. Let us know what else to add by emailing

1. There are likely thousands of people in our city living with COVID-19. No one asks for this disease. No one wants to spread it. We need solidarity, not stigma, to overcome this. Please demonstrate empathy for those affected. Remember, this virus can affect anyone, and chances are that you or someone you know will one day be affected too (if not already). #WeAreInThisTogether

2. Huge thank you to all the essential workers out there keeping our City running - we really appreciate everything you do!

3. New local food bank: Whether you are finding yourself in need of assistance, or you're looking for ways to help others in our community, there is a new food bank servicing our neighbourhood (K1C postal code). It is located in the Community Pentecostal Church, 1825 St Joseph Blvd. Donations may be dropped off at the Community Compassion Centre Food Bank, weekdays Monday – Friday between 0900-1400. A drop off bin is available inside the east doors leading to the church office.

4. Grocery shopping: Try to plan ahead and order your groceries online (increased demand has significantly increased the wait time, so order well in advance). If you must go in person, check to see if your store has dedicated hours for people aged 65 years and older (e.g., 7am to 8am) and also try to stick to the "one person per family, once a week" recommendation in order to reduce the number of people in stores.

5. #StayHome as much as possible (and absolutely #StayHome for 14 days if you have been travelling outside of Canada). It is particularly important for people over 70 years of age and anyone with a compromised immune system to stay home as much as possible. You can help limit community spread by not gathering in groups of more than 5 people (families of 5+ that live together exempt), not going to the park (the City has closed all park amenities), and only go to work if absolutely necessary. Please be courteous when passing others walking on the sidewalk - maintain a 2-meter distance and pass each other quickly, which will help keep the risk of infection during these encounters low.

6. Speeding. Less traffic does not mean drivers should increase their speed on the road. There will be more pedestrians, cyclists, and children outside playing (especially as the weather gets warmer). Reports of stunt driving along the 174 are truly terrifying. First responders are busy enough without the addition of needless speed-related incidents/accidents.
7. Volunteer: if you would like to help out those in need during this crisis, please visit United Way Eastern Ontario, who has put together a list of volunteer opportunities and guidelines for how to do so safely.

8. Resource for accessing government support: a professor at Carleton University put together this google document to help people looking to access government supports for various scenarios.

9. Blood donation: please consider donating blood if you are able to - contact Canadian Blood Services to book an appointment (they also have a mobile clinic at the Community Pentecostal Church on St Joseph Blvd).

10. Be well, wash your hands, take care of your mental health, and stay physically-distanced but socially-connected to family, friends, neighbours during these uncertain times. #HangInThere