Facebook is expanding its Community Help Hub to better serve local communities amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The hub has been used extensively by those who request food, supplies and information about local resources, as well as volunteers and groups who are willing to lend a hand. Facebook is now adding more features to the hub to help local businesses, blood banks, nonprofits, and more.
As part of Facebook's efforts with GivingTuesday, these new additions will be launched on May 5th.
Typically, the GivingTuesday charity event takes place on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving in the United States – after Black Friday and Cyber Monday are closed. In response to the unprecedented need for the pandemic, GivingTuesday announced an emergency day called Giving Tuesday Now.
This new event takes place tomorrow, May 5th, and already has a number of partners and supporters, including Facebook and PayPal, America's Food Fund, Ford, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the CDC Foundation, LinkedIn, United Way, GoFundMe and many others.
Starting tomorrow, Facebook users will be able to access Community Help at Facebook.com/covidsupport to buy gift cards for local businesses, sign up for a donation to local nonprofits, and fundraisers, and sign up as a donor to local blood banks. and find local employment opportunities.
In some cases, Facebook had already developed the technology and partnered to launch these features. For example, Facebook started connecting Facebook users to blood banks back in 2017 and expanded its blood donation feature to the United States last June.
It also offers its own fundraising platform and announced last month that it was working on tools that companies could use to offer gift cards to their customers through their platform. The company has also been working on its job portal since 2018.
On Tuesday, these efforts will be centralized in the Community Help Hub, making them more visible.
Facebook is not the only platform that helps local businesses and nonprofits by introducing new features.
The Neighborhood Nextdoor social network recently launched tools that companies can use to promote their fundraisers and gift cards. Yelp has just added a way for businesses to advertise their virtual services. Instagram has introduced a number of tools for businesses, including tools to connect customers with Facebook gift cards or stickers for ordering groceries, and more.
The revised Community Help Center will be online tomorrow, May 5th, 2020.