Updated: 17 May 2020
It is important to empower and coordinate with government and non-governmental social services to reach those most vulnerable to the risks of hot weather and COVID-19.
Local government, along with offices and services for the aging, child and family services, services for people living with disabilities and other social safety net programmes are all key partners. These offices can be effective ways to reach vulnerable people during hot weather, as most will have established virtual and tele-access options for continuing support during COVID-19. It is also important to coordinate with prisons and other types of residential institutions, especially if they lack air-conditioning.
Civil society and religious institutions that perform social service functions are important too. This could include places of worship, community associations and clubs, food banks, homeless shelters and volunteer organizations such as the Red Cross Red Crescent Societies.
Ensuring that these agencies and organizations are aware of the heightened risks during hot weather and are equipped to provide basic information on heat awareness, along with referrals to more information and services, will help to reduce community vulnerability. Each of these groups can play a role in safely reaching (virtually or in-person) people who are highly vulnerable to the combined risks of extreme heat and COVID-19, if provided with the right training and coordinated support.