Facebook Adds New 'Community Help' Tool Allowing Its Users To Request Or Offer Aid In Their Neighborhood

  • Facebook announced the addition of a new ‘Community Help’ tool in its efforts to provide assistance and relief during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • How the new tool works for the users to offer and request aid within their community.
  • Facebook might keep the new tool as a permanent option.

Facebook has been taking steps to relieve and assist the masses after the coronavirus outbreak which is spreading across the world. These efforts include the platform, to block over-priced ads for essentials such as surgical masks and hand sanitizer, and taking steps to stop the spread of coronavirus misinformation. On Tuesday, the company announced to add a new tool called ‘Community Help’ in its efforts to assist the users during the coronavirus pandemic. The new tool will allow the users to offer help and request aid within their surrounding areas.

The company stated that they are launching the new Community Help tool which will be a platform for their users to offer aid to people in need and to request help from the masses. The help might include volunteering for delivering edibles or donating to local food banks. You will now be able to directly offer help or volunteer your services to people within your community during these crises. You can also make donations to a local fundraiser by using the said tool.

By using the new Community Tool, you can search for people offering their help or those in need of aid within a radius of 50 miles from your current location. You can also lower down this range to 5 miles to reach your local neighborhood. Within the Community Help platform, you can see two options- ‘Request help’ or ‘Offer help’. You can tap on any of these options and a pop-up tab activates. The tab comes with a range of options that you can add to your post while requesting or offering aid within the platform.

It includes up to 14 pictures and related tags which will help the users to sort your post who searching to offer or request help. Users can set a favored contact method such as Messenger app or WhatsApp. It works like a regular post and you can set the privacy of the post public or only to your friends. The platform is similar to a neighborhood app called ‘Nextdoor’ which also has been experiencing surged traffic after the coronavirus outbreak. There are already similar features available on Facebook such as the listing of local Marketplaces etc. But this new tool focuses on providing assistance. Facebook has a broader reach than local service providers with over 2.5 billion monthly active users surfing through the platform and this step can provide potential benefits to the masses during these crises.

While the tool is launched to help people during the coronavirus crises but the platform may keep the said tool as a permanent option for providing assistance to help communities stay in touch and help each other through the social media platform. The tool has rolled out to the public in the US, France, Canada, Australia, and the UK, and will roll out to other countries soon.

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