Community Support and Organizing

Pandemic Community Resource
A regularly updated list of local resources for food, shelter, health and wellbeing, transportation, financial support, substance use, harm reduction and supplies and support, legal.

COVID-19 Coming Together (Victoria/Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ Lands)
Local Facebook group used as a mutual aid platform. Members can post in the group to offer or request substantive help relating to the pandemic (delivery of groceries for those self-isolating, financial assistance, etc.). The group also has a files page that includes information on a variety of COVID-19 related resources, as well as a companion app where you can request/offer services from other members.

COVID-19 Rent Strike Victoria/Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ Lands
Facebook group for the discussion of a locally organized rental strike.

Digital Town Halls and Community Drop-ins with Laurel Collins
Local MP Laurel Collins is hosting regular online events to discuss government COVID-19 response with her constituents. Further information about these events can be found on her Facebook page.

Buddy Up! Ask/Offer Map
Online community organizer kit.

COVID-19 Community Connect
A community collated resource list with demographic specific information.

Mutual Aid and Survival
List of resources on caring for your communities written by disabled activists. Includes self-care tips from nurses, how to pod map for mutual aid, freelance artist resources, resource kits and more.

LGBTI COVID-19 Response
Facebook group for LGBTI folks for connecting our communities to information from epidemiologic and medical professionals dealing with the virus.

COVID-19 Information

Island Health
Information from Island Health about COVID-19.

Government of Canada
Information from the Government of Canada about COVID-19.

HealthLink BC Hotline
Call 8-1-1 to connect with a Registered Nurse if you have COVID-19 symptoms or are concerned about exposure.

A COVID-19 specific hotline has also been set up for those seeking non-medical information about the pandemic at 1-888-COVID-19 (1-888-268-4319).

World Health Organization
Information from the WHO about COVID-19.

COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool
Online tool to determine whether you may need testing or assessment for COVID-19.

COVID-19 Outbreak Update
Provides up to date official information on COVID-19 in Canada from the Government of Canada. Includes information on being prepared, travel advice, symptoms and treatments, prevent and risk, guidance documents, information for health care professionals, and Canada’s response.

Getting your home ready for COVID-19
CDC guidelines to plan and prepare your household for a COVID-19 outbreak in your community. This guide will be updated as new information is available.Government of Canada telephone information line for questions about COVID-19: 1-833-784-4397

Financial Assistance and Housing

Canada Emergency Care Benefit
Government of Canada Program – If you have stopped working because of COVID-19, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) may provide you with temporary income support. The CERB provides $500 a week for up to 16 weeks.

BC Emergency Benefit for Workers
Government of British Columbia Program – A tax-free, one time $1,000 payment for B.C. residents whose ability to work has been affected due to COVID-19.

BC Hydro COVID-19 Relief Fund
Financial Relief Program – If you or your spouse/partner have stopped working due to COVID-19, you may be eligible for three months of bill credit based on your average consumption. Application open until June 30, 2020.

Temporary Rental Supplement
Government of British Columbia Program – Up to $500/month for low- and moderate-income renters with dependents and $300/month for those without dependents who are facing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. This will be paid directly to landlords.

Victoria Affordable Housing Network
A Facebook group to post ads of affordable housing, organize workshops and political demonstrations, and provide support and resources to people looking for affordable housing in Victoria

Victoria BC Community Housing Network
A Facebook group to connect Victoria’s community with homes to grow together as a group and support each other.

Canadian Professional Bartenders Association Relief Fund
The CPBA is offering financial assistance to their members who have been financially effected by COVID-19. New members are eligible for relief and the Association is still accepting applicants.

Resources for Canadian artists, writers and media workers during COVID-19 shutdowns
Google document with information on emergency funding, upcoming scholarships and awards, advocacy for freelancers, online training resources, health and mental health resources, and temporary/remote job opportunities.

Together Against Poverty Society
Non-Profit Service – Provides free legal advocacy for people with income assistance, disability benefits, employment standards, and tenancy issues.

Tenancies
B.C. has halted all new and active evictions, except under exceptional circumstances and Annual rent increases are frozen.

Queer Housing Victoria
Facebook Group – This is a group for people who identify with or as LGBTQ2IA+ that are seeking or offering shared accommodation (short or long-term) on Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ territories (Victoria area, British Columbia, Canada).

Seniors

BC211 Seniors Volunteering
A program that matches seniors who need support with non-medical essentials to volunteers in their community who are willing to help.

Altered Grocery Times for Seniors and High-Risk Persons
Multiple stores are opening earlier or at specific times for seniors and at-risk populations to shop to minimize risk.

Victoria Lesbian Seniors Care Society
Facebook Group – Provides safe, accessible, and welcoming spaces, and build community through public education and social action.

Disability

B.C. Intersectional Disability Caucus
Information, discussion, and action promoting and amplifying intersectional disabled voices and areas of concern.

COVID-19 CACL Disability Resources
Canadian Association for Community Living has compiled a page with trusted sources for COVID-19 information, as well as resources regarding discrimination, caregiving, mental health and government support.

COVID-19 and Chronic Conditions
Information from the BCCDC about the additional risks of COVID-19 for those with chronic illnesses, how to mitigate those risks, and resources for accessing services and medical supplies.

Queerabilities Victoria
Non-Profit Support Group – A group of individuals who identify somewhere on the LGBTTQ+ spectrum and who are also living with a disability, either diagnosed or not. The group hosts regular virtual group gatherings.

Vancouver Island LGBTQIA2s Spoon Sharing Group and Community Support
Facebook Group – A group for disabled, mentally ill, and neurodivergent folx to get support through the power of community care and mutual support!

Mental Health

9 Strategies for Quarantining in a Non-LGBTQ+ Affirming Environment
Article detailing tips from queer therapists and the Trevor Project, written by Wren Saunders for Them, an LGBT+-focused online magazine.

Managing Stress and Anxiety from COVID-19
Starling Minds is a digital mental health platform that delivers education on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy techniques for organizations and their employees. They have developed a confidential online program that provides tools to manage anxiety around the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is completely free and has no eligibility requirements.

Government of B.C.: Managing COVID-19 Stress, Anxiety & Depression
5 step guide from the province for managing the effects of COVID-19 on mental health. The page also includes tools for locating mental health services.

Harm Reduction

Substance Use and COVID-19
Information from the BC Centre for Disease Control about how to engage in harm reduction while socially isolating or under quarantine and the enhanced risks of COVID-19 for substance users

Toward the Heart – Find a Site
BCCDC tool for locating harm reduction sites. Some sites may be experiencing closures or reduced hours and services due to COVID-19; contact information is provided to confirm with the site the conditions under which they are currently operating.

COVID-19 Harm Reduction Tips for People Who Use Drugs
Infographic and transcription of graphic of harm reduction tips for people who use drugs.

Online AA Meetings
Google document with a list of resources including an online meetings directory, speaker tapes, speaker tape apps, and online AA companion guides.

Trans, Two Spirit, and Gender Diverse Resources

TransCare BC
Information from TransCare BC about the effect of COVID-19 on access to gender-affirming surgeries.

Rainbow Health Co-operative
A not-for-profit cooperative with a focus and emphasis on gender wellness and education.

South Island Gender Varient Drop In Group
Non-Profit Support Group – A monthly drop-in space for the diverse array of trans, gender queer, two-spirit, and gender variant individuals in the Southern Vancouver Island area.

Support Groups & Services

Victim Link BC
Information and referral services for anyone experiencing violence or abuse.

BC211 Services Lookup
A comprehensive list of health and support groups in BC.

Mood Disorders Association of British Columbia
A list of peer support groups for mood disorders.

COVID-19 Coming Together (Victoria/Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ Lands)
Local Facebook group used as a mutual aid platform. Members can post in the group to offer or request substantive help relating to the pandemic (delivery of groceries for those self-isolating, financial assistance, etc.). The group also has a files page that includes information on a variety of COVID-19 related resources, as well as a companion app where you can request/offer services from other members.

Digital Events

The Vicarious Show
Sponsored by Victoria Pride, the Victorious Show is a weekly livestreamed show every Saturday night featuring local queer artists.

Queer Crafernoons
Queer Crafternoon is a free monthly drop-in art space for queer, trans, and two-spirit folks of all ages along with their friends and family to craft, create, and connect!

Showcase BC
An online hub of live performances and entertainment so that British Columbians can enjoy live music at home.One-time micro-grants of $500 to emerging artists and $2,000 to established artists for livestreaming, songwriting and professional development available.

Club Quarantine
Nightly online queer party via Zoom.

Employment

WorkBC Service Centre
WorkBC’s Employment Services program that provides assistance with job hunting, certification and training, resume help, and many other resources.

Victoria Job Search
A Facebook group for those looking for work or temporary income streams.

Employment and Social Development Canada COVID-19 Response Page
This page includes instructions for applying for multiple social programs including EI sickness benefits due to self-quarantine.

EI Benefits for Self-Employed Persons
If you are self-employed, use this page to apply for EI/Sickness EI due to COVID-19.

***After completing either of these processes contact the new dedicated toll-free phone number if you are in quarantine and seeking to waive the one-week EI sickness benefits waiting period so you can be paid for the first week of your claim***

Telephone (toll-free): 1-833-381-2725
Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-800-529-3742

Resources for Canadian artists, writers and media workers during COVID-19 shutdowns
Google document with information on emergency funding, upcoming scholarships and awards, advocacy for freelancers, online training resources, health and mental health resources, and temporary/remote job opportunities.

Fact sheet on your rights if you were laid off/need to take time off (non-unionized workers)

Webinar by the Retail Action Network (RAN) about your rights during COVID-19

Jobs for Queers Victoria B.C.
Facebook Group – Groups for posting jobs or volunteer opportunities for queers in Greater Victoria.

Homeschool/Kids/Students/Youth

Think Indigenous – Online Indigenous Education K-8
Indigenous educators across Turtle Island are creating learning opportunities for children in grades K-8 by livestreaming classes daily. Usually about 30 minutes in length and developed through a lens of Indigenous learning systems.

Khan Academy
Khan Academy is a non-profit organization that offers free video lessons and study resources for a variety of subject.

Scholastic – Learn at Home
Scholastic has released 20 days worth of educational programming to supplement those home schooling as a result of COVID-19.

TedEd@Home
In response to COVID-19 school closures, TedEd has launched free, daily interactive video lessons from grade school level up to University.

Government of BC – Child Care
Details the Province’s action plan for supporting childcare workers and parents who work in essential services through COVID-19.

Here2Talk
All students currently registered in a B.C. post-secondary institution have access to free, confidential counselling and community referral services, conveniently available 24/7 via app, phone and web.

UVic Emergency Bursary Benefit For Students
Financial Support – Available to all UVic students—domestic or international, undergraduate or graduate—who are experiencing emergency financial need as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Student Loan Freeze
Both Canada and BC student loan payments will be paused for six months, with no interest charged on the federal portion during this period. The B.C. portion is already interest-free. This will happen automatically; there is no need to apply.

Sex Work

A Beginner’s Guide to Safe Sex Work in the Age of the Internet
Article giving a basic introduction to entering online sex work. May be helpful for those transitioning from in-person sex work, or those who are choosing to enter sex work due to financial insecurity resulting from COVID-19.

PEERS Victoria COVID-19 Response Plan
Information on how PEERS Victoria is re-orienting their services to accommodate the need for social disctancing. They also have a lengthy resource page on their website.

Sex Work COVID-19: Guidelines for Sex Workers, Clients, Third Parties, and Allies
Guide by Maggies and Butterfly with info on COVID-19 transmission, protective measures, guidelines for sex workers, clients, third parties and allies, and community resources.

Notes On Coronavirus and Sex Work Part 1
Facebook note with information on precautions, a guide on what COVID-19 is and how it is transmitted, transmission routes, and what you can do.

Sexual Health

AIDs Vancouver Island
Service updates from AIDs Vancouver Island.

What people living with HIV need to know about HIV and COVID-19
PDF Infographic with information for people with HIV. Includes info on how to stay safe, be prepared, support yourself and people around you, get treatment and know your rights.

Stopping and starting PrEP during COVID-19
Information for people who have decided to take a break from using PrEP while they abstain from sex during social distancing. Information on stopping, starting, and changing daily doses.

Having Sex and Staying Safe Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic
Guide from HIM on different options to have sex during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Community Resources Document

Working from Home

Working from home for the first time? Here’s how to make it a success
Article from CBC with tips on how to manage the adjustment of working from home.

A Simple Guide to Working/Learning from Home: HOW TO ADJUST
Video from How to ADHD on how to transition to working or learning from home. Includes research-based strategies for neurodiverse brains.

High Risk Request for Work-From-Home Template Letter
Google document providing workers with a template letter to request work-from-home accommodation.