Sharing things that actually help!

facebook community help

A significant impact of a disaster is the loss of human life rendering the disaster victims vulnerable to psychological effects. Lending support at such difficult times is more important than ever.

Besides praying for the victims, you can now actually provide help via
Facebook. The Social platform is extending its Safety check feature with the launch of ‘Community help‘, a feature which lets you find and share food and shelter amenities after a crisis.

Facebook’s involvement

Facebook has played a vital role as a listener of user needs.
In 2014, after the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge went viral raising over $200 million, it introduced the Donate button making charity easier.

It launched amber alerts back in 2015, pairing up the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to become the world’s largest neighbourhood watch hub.

2017 saw the launch of ‘Discover people’ helping people to identify nearby events and people who share a common employer with a focused on building professional connections. The Social platform is looking to help people leverage the power of community.

Automation comes into play


In the past crisis monitoring was done manually, however to ensure scalability and efficiency Facebook turned to automation streamlining the Safety check.

The feature is activated when:

1) Verified alerts are received from global reporting agencies NC4 and iJET International, providing title and location.

2) When numerous people start talking about an incident, triggering the action for monitoring and urging users to mark themselves safe & also ask their friends for the same.

To ensure Community help is effective, with the activation Facebook looks to prevent fake news from popping up and ensure disaster-related terms are monitored.

Connecting local communities

With ‘Community help’ assistance, users can mark themselves safe and are directed to a special page and feed related to the crisis, where they can post their requirements for help. There are 10 different categories ranging from food and shelter to transportation and food supplies, supplying the necessary requirements to those who look to offer help.

While this feature enables people to connect via messenger, Facebook ensures the providers are trustworthy by displaying best practices on the app interface and allows users to report a suspicious post.

Social media to the rescue

social media

Social media has been the place for people to share information at the time of crisis. With the dissemination of updates via news feed, Facebook has created a proper framework to ensure victims get help in times of danger. ‘Community help’ can serve as the helping hand and ensure that mankind can really make a difference leveraging technology for its noble cause.

This post is part of our contributor series. It is written and published independently of TNW.

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