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This online platform helps frontline medical staff get groceries during COVID-19

GroceryHero Canada matches health care workers with volunteer shoppers in their area.
By: Madeleine Hall
April 02, 2020
Photo: GroceryHero (Facebook)
Photo: GroceryHero (Facebook)

A group of innovators based in Toronto, ON have created a genius initiative to help support frontline health care workers and empower citizens who are eager to step up and support. GroceryHero is an online platform that matches health care workers who are in need of help with groceries with volunteer shoppers based on their postal code. In an interview, GroceryHero co-founder Matthew Lombardi told CP24 Toronto that medical staff face difficulties securing groceries for two reasons: “food delivery services are really oversubscribed right now. Medical professionals also are really conscientious about not wanting to go inside grocery stores after their shifts and potentially expose the public.”

The idea for GroceryHero came to Lombardi when a physician friend mentioned he was having trouble obtaining groceries because of the two concerns mentioned above. The two soon realized this was a problem plaguing health care professionals across the country and Lombardi quickly got to work on GroceryHero.

The service had over 500 signups in its first day, and successfully matched dozens of health care workers with volunteer shoppers. Amidst these sign ups, were pleas for the service to go national; in its earliest days it was limited to the Toronto area. A day later, GroceryHero shared on Facebook that the service was available nationally, and that over 1000 signups had led to over 150 pairings. These numbers continue to grow daily.

GroceryHero is open to all frontline health care professionals, including nurses, doctors, personal support workers, and frontline hospital staff. The creators encourage anyone either in need of groceries or able to volunteer as a shopper to visit their Facebook page and fill out this signup form.

Source: GroceryHero (Facebook)

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