Oakland,

Right now the most frequent question I hear from residents is, “How can I help?”

Today we launched the Oakland COVID-19 Relief Fund to deliver immediate assistance to our most vulnerable residents and our first responders. The initial fund has already raised $2.5 million thanks to generous donors, and it will grow with donations from you and more philanthropic organizations.

We are focused on four key areas : food insecurity for seniors and low-income residents; services for our homeless residents; community health organizations to serve uninsured residents; and small local businesses that have lost income due to the pandemic.

Additionally, funds have already gone out to the door to help stand up a drive-through testing site specifically for our first responders. Taking care of the people who take care of us keeps all of us safe. The first site went up on Friday, and we’ve already started testing our frontline public safety and healthcare personnel.
If you want to volunteer directly with our partners SOS Meals on Wheels to assist packing or delivering food to our seniors, contact SOS Meals on Wheels at their website here .

To learn more about the Oakland COVID-19 Relief Fund and donate click here , and to watch a press conference we held with Councilmembers Lynette Gibson McElhaney , Dan Kalb , and Nikki Fortunato Bas , see my Twitter feed here
On Thursday we hosted our first online Town Hall to answer your questions about the city’s response to COVID-19 and offer the most critical resources to residents.

Oaklanders submitted more than 130 questions that asked about assistance for small business owners and workers, renters and home owners, homeless residents, and overall city services. We also took live questions and were joined by state Assemblymember Ron Bonta to discuss new state legislation that will help Oaklanders.
Our city will host a livestream event at least once a week during the emergency order to keep our residents updated and engaged, and I hope you’ll follow my social media feeds for more frequent updates and announcements.

You can follow me on Facebook , Twitter , and Instagram
Lastly, as this situation changes rapidly, please make sure you have access to key websites for official information. The State of California just put up a handy website for residents that updates everything from current health risks, employment benefits, to new tax information.
Our local Alameda County Public Health Department also issues local health protocols daily and has a clear FAQ section on what “shelter at home” means .
And our City of Oakland also has a site dedicated to our local resources . Our East Bay Regional Park District also put out an FAQ addressing the regulations about using trails and open spaces at this time.

Once again, I want to thank every Oaklander for showing up for each other. Remember to stay in, order out, and take care of each other. 

Sincerely,

Mayor Libby Schaaf