MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA - NOVEMBER 04: Mark Zuckerberg
(Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images for Breakthrough Prize)
  • Facebook launched a new tool called "Community Help" on Tuesday.
  • It is not yet available in South Africa, but is being rolled out globally, and should be soon.
  • Community Help is designed to let people request or offer help to people nearby during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • You can request or offer help with groceries, supplies, or general volunteer work.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za. 

Facebook has built a tool for hooking up those requesting and those offering help during the coronavirus pandemic.

It is not yet available in South Africa, but is being rolled out globally, and should be working in SA soon.

As the coronavirus has spread across the globe Facebook has had to race to react to misinformation, price-gouging on essentials like hand sanitiser, and even phoney coronavirus cures.

The company launched "Community Help" on Tuesday, describing it as: "a place for people to request or offer help to neighbours, such as volunteering to deliver groceries or donating to a local food pantry or fundraiser."

Facebook said it is rolling the tool out in the US, the UK, France, Australia, and Canada over the next few days, and is looking to expand to more territories after that.

Here's what it looks like:

This is the main page

Facebook

You can control how big an area you want to see requests or offers from

Facebook

You can select 10 km, 25 km, 50 km, or 100 km.


There's also a filter on the sidebar for what kind of posts you can look for

Facebook

Categories include: baby supplies, food, information, transport, and volunteer work.


Once you have your settings in place, Facebook shows a wall of nearby offers and requests

Facebook

Clicking on "request help" or "offer help" brings up this window

Facebook

You can also control the privacy settings of your post

Facebook

Like on your regular Facebook account, posts can be made "public," visible to "friends of friends" or just "friends."


You can also choose between being contacted on Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp

Facebook

There's also a panel dedicated to either finding or making a Facebook fundraiser

Facebook

Facebook itself has already set aside $20 million (R360 million) to match donations to two separate funds dedicated to fighting the virus.

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