Minnesota nonprofit launches to connect volunteers with those vulnerable to COVID-19

Northstar Neighbor recently launched to help those who are more vulnerable to contracting COVID-19.

A new nonprofit is aiming to provide relief to those most at risk of contracting COVID-19.

“Most of us are inconvenienced by this or it’s a little scary, but we have people around us to help us, even if it’s to call and just have somebody to have our back, but there are people, probably tens of thousands of them in Minnesota who don’t have that network, they have no network at all and they are alone,” said Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson. 

Johnson helped launch Northstar Neighbor just a few days ago. The goal is to pair healthy, low-risk adults under the age of 60 with those who are the most vulnerable. Once a connection has been established, volunteers are expected to regularly stay in contact with the person they’ve been matched with and assist with everything from grocery store and pharmacy runs to just having someone to talk to.

“That is going to be the challenge for us honestly, is finding those people who don’t have a network because they’re not on Facebook and they’re not on the internet and they are hard to get to and that’s what we’re really trying to do,” said Johnson. “We’re having a wonderful response from volunteers, we want to continue, but now we also need to reach more of the people who are alone right now and they just need somebody to be their friend, frankly.”

Northstar is modeled after a similar organization in Louisville, Kentucky. Johnson says that so far they have more than 100 volunteers from 25 cities across the state. That number is expected to grow.

For anyone who is looking to volunteer or is interested in matching up with volunteer, you can find more info at this link.