Around the world, communities are using innovative approaches to support coronavirus (COVID-19) response efforts. Each week, FEMA is highlighting these extraordinary efforts so that other others can learn from and expand on them. This week focuses on how some communities are providing contactless or virtual solutions to new everyday problems.
Mobile Wi-Fi Vans
In San Antonio, vans equipped with high-speed Wi-Fi networks are dispatched to various locations in the city to enhance internet capabilities for students. The mobile hotspots provide free internet within a range of 100 to 200 feet. City residents accessing the network must observe social distancing guidelines. Vans are deployed based on an assessment of various factors. Some of these factors include student population in the area and areas that lack broadband internet access.
Virtual Tour App
In the Faroe Islands, a territory of Denmark that greatly relies on tourism, virtual visitors unable to travel during the coronavirus pandemic can use a free mobile application to visit the islands by "controlling" a local tour guide to create their own sight-seeing route. Camera-wearing locals will respond to sight-seeing commands from people at home. The tour guide app also has the capability to provide commentary.
Social Media Influencers Team Up with The Red Cross
The International Federation of the Red Cross recently announced that it is collaborating with social media influencers around the world to combat the spread of misinformation on COVID-19. Influencers who partner with the Red Cross will incorporate verified information and messaging into their creative content.
A software company is donating dozens of drones to emergency responders across the country as part of its emergency response program. These drones can be used by police and fire departments to assess situations from afar and gain situational awareness. The company is also providing free training and support for the use of these drones.
These stories are part of the FEMA Best Practice initiative, which focuses on compiling the best practices and lessons learned from communities fighting COVID-19. To see more stories like this, visit the Best Practices page.