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Connecting Communities | April 2nd 2020

Dear colleagues / friends

We are keen to make this ’news you can use’. You can help by:

  • Providing feedback on articles and presentation – can we be more helpful? 

  • Send us links to ‘local’ and other articles for wider sharing. Any and all languages.

  • Adapt the newsletter for use in your local networks. Personal stories can be found on our blog at https://bit.ly/39we6RC

Stories with pictures on website at cccovid19.org

Please share with your networks especially community support groups.

'Connecting Communities’ is drafted by WHO public health experts aggregating news from around the world. It aims to provide a selected sampling of 'news for you to use, inform behaviour and help others. Please contribute and pass on to your friends, family, networks. Send stories in any of the eight areas listed below.

  • Isolation

  • Hygiene

  • Working remotely

  • Virtual classrooms

  • Community action

  • Public policies

  • Maintaining services & health care challenges / opportunities.

As we are all communicators in this era you are invited pass it on!

Contact details:





Maintaining your sanity during self-isolation

With all of us thrust indoors, maintaining our sanity during isolation should now be our focus. Here's how to not go cuckoo.

30th Mar 2020 - The Big Smoke Australia

Remote Working by Lorcan Murphy

Coping with self-isolation when struggling with mental health

Unfortunately, those activities are now exactly what we are being urged not to do. Isolation is, by definition, a lonely prospect. And while maintaining social distancing is vital to help tackle the spread of coronavirus, it can still be tough on mental health. To help address this issue, Stephen Buckley, Head of Information at mental health charity Mind, has shared with UNILAD some tips on how to maintain good mental health and stay connected while social distancing.

30th Mar 2020 - UNILAD

Make self-isolation into family bonding Keeping kids engaged during lockdown 

Presenting pitches from your sofa, collaborating on team decks remotely and bringing your laptop to the breakfast table. Working from home is an adjustment for many. But adding children to the mix brings its own complexities. How do parents keep their children entertained and engaged while they juggle team video conference calls and draft presentations? What happens to snack time, play-time and me-time? ETPanache spoke to a few paediatricians, counsellors and parenting consultants 

1st Apr 2020 - Economic Times

Coping with self-isolation stress in Suffolk

Listen as PTSD sufferer John and Amy talk to head of news Natalie Sadler here, discussing quarantine, fitness and homeschooling, and explaining how they are keeping the dream of a gap year in South East Asia alive.

30th Mar 2020 - East Anglian Daily Times

The Beat Goes On - Can You Add to My Family's Music Playlist?

As we head further into the unknown, the one thing in our house that remains consistent, reliable and makes us all mostly happy is music. So as home schooling mostly wraps for the day, dinner plans are laid out and and that oh-so-welcoming adult beverage slides into our hands. Then, we play an album, record, CD (whatever you want to call it) throughout the house nightly. Recently, we've been reaching back a decade or two or more. Some stuff my wife grew up on, some stuff I grew up on. Some our parents played for us - maybe their parents even played for them - but nonetheless, since we have the time we thought we'd expose the kids to some of our seminal soundtracks. 

1st Apr 2020 - 30 Seconds

Surrey County Council tips on isolation

Surrey County Council (SCC) have shared tips with residents to help them get through the lockdown measures imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus. SCC also directed residents towards a number of services available to all residents that are easily accessible from home like mental health support services or E-books from the county's libraries.

1st Apr 2020 - Surrey Comet

A cabin in my living room - why do confined children build hiding places?

A hidden virus, more schooling and friends to play with, parents ... in order to cope with this new environment, some children are building inner shelters. So many ways to smooth staying at home

1st Apr 2020 - Le Monde

Woman runs a marathon on balcony

An Azurean woman from Saint-Jeannet has just completed a marathon ... on her 6m long balcony. Confinement needs must she launched this crazy bet and held up her end. Here is the story of this incredible positive sporting moment.

25th Mar 2020 - France Bleu

5 Finnish secrets of happy containment

The happiest citizens of the planet, the Finns, know how to keep morale high in all circumstances. Here we have their recipe for helping you to continue bubbling with confidence

1st Apr 2020 - Le Figaro

Fighting boredom during Self-Isolation

On Monday, the Science Alert website cited several options through which people can help experts in tackling COVID-19. The first option is by playing Foldit, an online game designed in 2006 by researchers at the University of Washington. It challenges players to fold proteins to better understand their structure and function. The Foldit team is now challenging citizen scientists to design antiviral proteins that can bind with the coronavirus. The second option allows people to track the influenza infection by partaking in the online surveillance project FluTracking. By completing a 10-second survey each week, participants will aid researchers in monitoring the prevalence of flu-like symptoms across Australia and New Zealand. It could also help track the spread of the coronavirus and its influenza-like symptoms.

1st Apr 2020 - Asharq Al-awsat English

Hygiene Helpers

WHO - Basic protective measures

Stay aware of the latest information on the COVID-19 outbreak, available on the WHO website and through your national and local public health authority. Most people who become infected experience mild illness and recover, but it can be more severe for others. Take care of your health and protect others by doing the following:

1st Apr 2020 - World Health Organization

Coronavirus proofing your home

Life under coronavirus means staying at home as much as possible - but you'll likely need to make a trip to the grocery store or pharmacy at some point. Download or print this tip sheet to make sure you don't bring the virus back home with you.

31st Mar 2020 - CNN

Community Activities

6 ways to help fight the impacts

Although no one can single-handedly obliterate the virus or halt its wide-ranging impacts, there are still plenty of ways to help. Charities, not for profit and community aid networks across the D.C. region are mobilizing to help the most vulnerable people among us.

17th Mar 2020 - WAMU 88.5

Museum asks people to recreate paintings with home materials

Even though most of us are stuck at home during Coronavirus quarantine and can't go out and enjoy art in museums, that doesn't mean that life has to be boring or uncultured. The Getty Museum in Los Angeles challenged art fans to post photos of themselves recreating their favourite works of art from the safety of their homes. People responded with a lot of enthusiasm and flooded social media with their unique artistic interpretations. Scroll down to see the best examples!

1st Apr 2020 - Sad and Useless

Helping others in Tampa Bay in lockdown

Give blood, make face masks, support food banks and these and other ways to assist others while we keep our distance is recommended

2nd Apr 2020 - Tampa Bay Times

Animal crossing: couples hold wedding ceremonies on New Horizons

People are throwing elaborate ceremonies on the hit Nintendo Switch game after the pandemic derailed plans worldwide

1st Apr 2020 - The Independent

James O'Brien salutes a real hero

Colonel Ashleigh Boreham is not a name many people know, but James O'Brien picked him out as a hero in the fight against coronavirus - as he is the man who organised the building of the NHS Nightingale Hospital.

1st Apr 2020 - LBC

1.5m Israelis use Monitoring App

Around 1.5 million Israelis have downloaded a mobile app in the past week that alerts users who have crossed paths with a coronavirus patient, according to the Health Ministry, helping to improve tracking of the pandemic. The app "HaMagen" - Hebrew for The Shield - is sparking interest from abroad with approaches from Germany, Italy, Britain, Australia and Chile so far, ministry deputy director general Morris Dorfman said Wednesday. Under a ministry initiative, developers created the app using open-source tools so it can be quickly deployed in other countries at no cost, he told Reuters.

2nd Apr 2020 - The New York Times

Entire street joins 'socially-distant' dancing event outside homes

Families in a Cheshire street have been sharing a novel form of daily exercise during the coronavirus lockdown, by assembling outside their homes each morning for some "socially-distant" dancing. Video shows people living on the road in Frodsham demonstrating their best moves after venturing out of their front doors for the bout of communal activity to music.

1st Apr 2020 - Sky News

Wanted: Army of helpers for vulnerable in Middlesbrough

An army of volunteers took to the streets yesterday to spread the word of support available in the midst of the Covid-19 outbreak. Officers from across Middlesbrough Council were joined by representatives from Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation, totalling 150 people, to hand deliver nearly 70,000 leaflets on the Help Boro initiative, which calls for volunteers and vulnerable people that need support to come forward.

24th Mar 2020 - The Northern Echo

Working Remotely

27+ tips to make Working Remotely a Breeze

Are you working remotely because of COVID-19? Take a look at these great tools for collaboration, safety, and task management.

1st Apr 2020 - Interesting Engineering

Brave new world of remote work

Labouring off-site has been a trend for the last several decades, enabled by a host of varied and ever more powerful technologies. A variant of remote work (also known as telecommuting) is distributed work in which virtual teams - many scattered across the globe - collaborate on projects under the direction of their employer.

1st Apr 2020 - The Hill

How managers support remote employees

In a poll of my coaching clients last week about their biggest challenges, their key themes were about how to stay connected with each team member, help manage their own and others' stress, maintain team morale and motivation, run engaged meetings, track and communicate progress, and help their team shed nonessential work.

1st Apr 2020 - Harvard Business Review

Virtual Classrooms

Bringing Lessons to the (Virtual) Classroom

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact so many aspects of people's lives, University of Arizona faculty members from a range of disciplines are finding ways to use the global health crisis as a teachable moment in their courses.

1st Apr 2020 - UANews

Public Policies

White House advisor says vaccine trial is on target and will be 'ultimate game changer'

The first human trial of a potential vaccine to prevent COVID-19 is `on track. `Distribution projected to 12-18 months, an `ultimate game changer` says White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci. US health officials have been fast-tracking work with biotech company Moderna to develop a vaccine. 1st first human trials started on March 16. 2nd Apr 2020 - CNBC

Japan gives face masks to 50m households 

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Wednesday the government will distribute reusable cloth face masks to roughly 50 million households as stocks of disposable masks have run out at drugstores and other shops amid the coronavirus outbreak. The government will begin distributing the masks from next week, starting in the prefectures that have the highest number of infected patients.

1st Apr 2020 - Japan Times

US firm given $millions in taxes to design low-cost ventilator has sold it overseas

A US company that pocketed $14 million in tax dollars to make "game-changing" ventilators needed to fight the coronavirus has been selling versions of them overseas. There is not a single Trilogy Evo Universal machine available for Americans as the pandemic continues to take thousands of lives every week, according to ProPublica.

1st Apr 2020 - The Sun

How to tackle misinformation 

Professional journalism, ethical journalism, independent media, transparency from those in power, media literacy and the free flow of information are the best antidote to misinformation and conspiracy theories about the spread of COVID-19 across the globe. In that particular context, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomed the policy brief recently issued by ARTICLE19.

1st Apr 2020 - European Federation of Journalists

Nigeria's leaders to confront broken health system they rarely use

Without the option of traveling abroad, Nigerian government officials will reckon more closely with an underfunded and under-equipped healthcare system that regular Nigerians have become all too familiar with. Despite annual budgets running into hundreds of millions of dollars for public health, stories of oxygen shortages in public hospitals and surgeries being conducted without electricity remain commonplace in Nigeria. Similarly, strike actions by public healthcare workers protesting low and unpaid salaries by the government are a frequent occurrence. 31st Mar 2020 - QZ.com

Finland taps social media influencers

The drive is a collaboration between the Finnish government, the country's national emergency supply agency and PING Helsinki, a social media influencer consultancy. Though nobody could predict the pandemic, Finland has been preparing for a crisis of its magnitude for decades. The country's national emergency supply agency joins forces with the public sector and industry to secure the country's key functions during a national emergency. PING Helsinki edits the government's messages into a social media-friendly format, and sends it to its networks of some 1,500 influencers. Influencers are free to use the messages and images as they want.

31st Mar 2020 - POLITICO

Maintaining Services

Free childcare for working parents

Scott Morrison has announced anyone still working across Australia will be given free childcare during the coronavirus pandemic. `If you have a job in this economy then that is an essential job, in my view, in terms of running of the economy,` Mr Morrison said. `It is important that all of those parents who have children, that they get access to the childcare and those facilities will be there for them in the many months ahead.` He said 13,000 childcare centres would be financially supported to remain open during the outbreak after attendance numbers plummeted in recent weeks.

2nd Apr 2020 - Yahoo Australia

Success of candied dishes for the confined

During this period of containment, Occitan companies selling cassoulets and other local candied dishes respond to a significant demand for home deliveries.

30th Mar 2020 - France Bleu

WHO pays tribute to "extraordinary" work carried out at the Ifema hospital

The Ifema hospital in Madrid was described as "extraordinary" by Bruce Aylward, chief Covid-19 expert from the World Health Organization (WHO). On a visit to Madrid he commented during a visit to the field hospital, which is alleviating the healthcare pressure from other Madrid hospitals facing the Covid-19 coronavirus challenge. His tour of the ICU led to him commenting the way the hospitals and the courage shown by the health professionals reminded him of how the Chinese tackled the outbreak a while back

31st Mar 2020 - Redaccion Medica Additional sources: (ABC

Lack of childcare 'forces’ key workers to stay home'

Schools, nurseries and childminders were told to close their doors last week to all except vulnerable children and the children of key workers, such as NHS staff and delivery drivers. But many nurseries say staying open for such small numbers of children has not been financially viable. They also say staff need better protection from the coronavirus. The National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA) estimates around half of nurseries have completely closed for the duration of the coronavirus crisis.

30th Mar 2020 - BBC News

Free childcare for Colorado workers

All essential workers will have the opportunity to get free child care through May 17, according to an announcement Monday morning by the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS). On Monday, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis announced that the state will extend a full, 100% tuition credit to anybody defined as an essential worker in the Colorado stay-at-home public health order. 

30th Mar 2020 - The Denver Channel

Healthcare Innovations

Hull researcher says he has developed test that takes 5 minutes and costs just £2

Professor Maneesh Singh says the coronavirus test costs just £2 and could take as little as five minutes

1st Apr 2020 - Hull Daily Mail

Chinese tests suggest nearly 80% of cases are without symptoms

Dr Robert Lambkin-Williams, an independent virologist, said people who are asymptomatic can still be infectious

1st Apr 2020 - inews

Cardiac symptoms that aid transmission

Evidence so far indicates that the Covid-19 coronavirus can have fatal consequences for people with underlying cardiovascular disease. It is now also believed that it can cause heart damage, even in patients without underlying heart conditions, thanks to a study published in JAMA Cardiology by experts from the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Houston.

1st Apr 2020 - Redaccion Medica

Respiratory Pathogen Emission Dynamics

This newer understanding of respiratory emission dynamics has implications for mask and respiratory design, social distancing recommendations, and other public health interventions during and after the COVID-19 pandemic

26th Mar 2020 - JAMA

'Flat-pack' ventilator ready for mass production to save thousands of lives

A joint team from Oxford University and King's College London is awaiting government approval to mass produce the OxVent

25th Mar 2020 - inews


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