SUPPORTING SAN FRANCISCO THROUGH COVID-19
Today, sf.citi hosted a meeting between District 6 Supervisor Matt Haney and social impact leaders at San Francisco tech companies. With 24 representatives from across the tech industry joining, we discussed how San Francisco businesses and the City can work together to help our community navigate the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Supervisor Haney explained that his overwhelming priority has been to support the City’s COVID-19 health response and maintain social distancing protocols. He is paying special attention to San Francisco’s more vulnerable populations, including our homeless population, people in shelters and navigation centers, undocumented residents, and contract workers. “If the virus spreads among populations that are not able to self-isolate, it will affect all of us,” he emphasized.
Supervisor Haney outlined actions the tech community (and you) can take to help San Francisco address its most critical COVID-19 resource needs. We’ve listed these below.
- Donate supplies. The City has a shortage of not just medical supplies, but also toilet paper, cleaning supplies, and hand sanitizer. People and companies can make bulk in-kind donations through Give2SF. They can also work directly with Supervisor Haney’s office for small donations by contacting email@example.com.
- Look for opportunities with San Francisco small businesses and contract workers. Both of these groups have been particularly affected by COVID-19. The San Francisco Council of District Merchants Associations has great resources.
- Provide virtual learning opportunities and resources for students and educators. Due to COVID-19, San Francisco students will be out of school for almost half of their regular school year. We want to ensure they can continue learning—see below for educational technology resources and inspiration.
- Improve access to transportation, food, and supplies on Treasure Island. Several thousand San Franciscans live on Treasure Island and are struggling to access basic necessities during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Any other ways San Francisco’s tech community can support our City during this time of need? Let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
COVID-19 TECH RESOURCES FOR EDUCATORS & PARENTS
sf.citi has a running list of COVID-19 tech resources, many of which are geared toward students, parents, and educators adjusting to the widespread school closures prompted by COVID-19. We encourage you to share with anyone who might find these resources useful—you can even subscribe to receive our weekly Monday updates.
On Tuesday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that California schools would not reopen this academic year. In light of the challenges this news presents parents and educators alike, we wanted to highlight several educational tech resources available from sf.citi member companies and the broader tech community.
COVID-19 Tech Resources for Students, Parents, and Educators:
- Adobe is providing free, temporary at-home access to Creative Cloud through May 31 for schools and colleges who only offer lab access to students finessing their digital design skills.
- sf.citi member Amazon is offering a suite of free computer science courses for students of all ages.
- sf.citi member Dropbox is providing free Dropbox and HelloSign subscriptions for a three-month period to assist K-12 teachers with distance learning.
- sf.citi member Google launched a Teach from Home resource hub. Google CEO Sundar Pichai also announced Google would provide 4,000 Chromebooks to California students in greatest need.
- Educational institutions have complimentary access to sf.citi member Microsoft’s communication and collaboration platform, Microsoft Teams, through Office 365 A1. They’ll enjoy a free customized hub for class teamwork, including video meetings.
- Tynker helps children learn the fundamentals of computer science. In light of COVID-19, the company is offering its home learning program, Tynker for Home, for free. Schools are also invited to access the entire Tynker curriculum at no cost.
Finally, while not a tech company, the San Francisco Exploratorium released an online learning toolbox with free science activities and materials related to COVID-19.
REDEFINING SAN FRANCISCO’S FUTURE
In April, sf.citi welcomed Katherine Stubbs, a participant in the Coro Fellowship, onto our small, yet mighty team to learn more about tech and politics in San Francisco. At the end of her four weeks with sf.citi, Katherine shared her thoughts on San Francisco’s shifting identity and the future of both tech and the City.
The Coro Fellowship is known for attracting talented college graduates and producing respected leaders, including Senators Dianne Feinstein and Michael Bennet. Over the course of the nine-month fellowship, participants complete a series of placements with organizations and companies that span diverse sectors, political ideologies, and expertise. sf.citi was lucky to host Katherine for her second to last placement.
Even before COVID-19 consumed our lives, Katherine was quick to notice a sense of questioning among San Franciscans. Many conversations, she observed, revolve around how the City has transformed, where it’s heading in the future, and whether change is welcome. In her blog, Katherine recognizes that we as a City have an opportunity to define San Francisco’s future. She notes that innovation will be an important tool in shaping that future and describes ways the tech industry can act as a force for good.
DID YOU KNOW?
Proactive measures by Bay Area leaders—such as San Francisco’s early shelter-in-place mandate—have (so far) proven effective in flattening the curve of COVID-19 cases. We can all celebrate this morsel of good news, but let it also serve as a reminder of the importance of staying home in the coming weeks.