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Warwick students set up website to help organise COVID-19 volunteers

Three University of Warwick students have created Fight Covid UK, a website aimed at organising volunteers and projects to help fight COVID-19.

The student led and created website is currently 23 different projects organise resources and volunteers, all aimed at tackling disruption caused by COVID-19.

Speaking to The Boar, one of the website organisers, third-year English and Philosophy student Oliver Lewis, said: “Fight Covid UK is aimed at helping initiatives tackling COVID-19 to get access to skills and the expertise of volunteers.

“Good examples of who and how we aim to help could be linking education professionals and web developers to create an online tutoring app, alternatively finding lawyers that could provide insight to GDPR compliance for these projects. Fight Covid UK has been set up to connect these people together.”

Mr Lewis added that any University of Warwick student can get involved by signing up as a volunteer or “creating a project if they need help”. The organisers have also listed a project for themselves if students are interested in getting directly involved with Fight Covid UK.

When asked what inspired the group to create Fight Covid UK, Mr Lewis replied: “It was really set up by some friends – Oliver Weller-Davies and Ronit Kanwar. We’ve all been really impressed by the number of people across the UK wanting to lend their time and efforts to fighting the pandemic.

We know a lot of new initiatives still struggle to get off the ground becuase they lack resources. We want to make it easier for initiatives to find the help they need

– Oliver Lewis

“We know a lot of new initiatives still struggle to get off the ground because they lack resources. We want to make it easier for initiatives to find the help they need.”

When asked how Warwick Students’ Union (SU) can help, Mr Lewis said: “We want as many people as possible to know what we have on offer. We are hoping that we can be included in the newsletter.”

He also said that the University should be focusing on “the duty of care of its has to its staff and students” and is “happy that the University has adopted a safety-net policy for students taking exams this year”.

When asked if students have an obligation to help those who are vulnerable, Mr Lewis answered: “I do think that we should be aware of the suffering of so many. This might come in different forms. It takes a lot of work already to maintain healthy relationships inside of a family home 24/7 and to care for vulnerable relatives.

“If anyone has spare time and energy, we would love for them to help with the projects at Fight Covid UK.”

When asked what Fight Covid UK needs to fulfil its aims, Mr Lewis said that there “are lots of different things that each project needs” and that the project needs “as many volunteers as possible to get all bases covered”.

This is not the first student-led project; 120 final year students from the Warwick Medical School have already volunteered to work on the frontlines in local hospitals to help tackle COVID-19.

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