project leader
Kim C
location
Matching COVID-19 Workers to RVs
(San Francisco Bay Area)
latest update rss
RVMatchMaker Update Jan. 22, 2021

the project

UPDATE:  We reduced our budget for this month because we did not incur PR expenses yet. IOBY will update it shortly. 
Our revised budget for January 2021 is here: https://RVMatchMaker.ORG/budget

RVMatchMaker.ORG can match frontline workers to crowdsourced RVs to protect frontline families from devastating medical bills and even death, as a consequence of their work obligations.  We are now testing the platform in the San Francisco Bay Area before opening it up to the general public. 

Vaccines can prevent serious illness to recipient, but does not stop spread of the disease.  We anticipate the need for our platform will exist until herd immunity is reached with 70% of the population possessing COVID-19 antibodies. Until then, frontline healthcare workers risk of bringing COVID-19 home, even if they are vaccinated. We plan to start with assisting people in the state of California and will extend beyond that, if our capacity allows before the pandemic emergency is over.

There is significant work behind this platform and we think RV Owners will be delighted by the attention detail, and depth of information and expertise.  Remaining content is extensive which includes advice on utilities, zoning, insurance, care of RVs, being good neighbors, as well as detailed suggestions on screening applications and creating agreements.

We invite you to help by:

  1. Sharing our RVMATCHMAKER ANGEL posts to optimize matching success. (Details coming soon,) 
  2. Offering a donation of $25 or more to cover our expenses to do this project.  (We will send you our bumper sticker as a thank you gift.)

the steps

The RV featured in the image is the first RV going to a frontline worker.  To manage this platform is very difficult and we need to manage our time carefully.  Most of what we have requested in our budget is to help us manage media inquiries, so our volunteers can focus on the tasks at hand to manage the platform.

We want this service to be the best it can be serving the public.  To achieve this goal, we spent several months building the content and function of the website.  The next step is to launch a pilot and carefully document the experience, so that lessons learned can be shared with other RV owners.

The founder's RV will be used for the pilot project.  It is available for use until May 31, 2021.  If it only goes to one frontline worker that is fine, but we hope multiple frontline workers can be served until their vaccination is complete.

After the pilot RV is awarded, we will open up our website and hope to make many more RV matches after that within the state of California.  If we serve other areas, that will be dependent on (1) Affordable insurance (2) Deaths beyond historic norms (Which by the way, is 40% or more above previous historical norms in most communities!!!!) (3) Size of surrounding metro area.

Our current projections, based on analysis by a team member who is an economist, is that we will be finished with our mission in June of 2021.

Upon conclusion of RVMatchMaker.ORG, we hope to use the momentum toward another disaster relief related project the can help optimize the recovery of displaced survivors and their surrounding communities.

If you know someone who works on the frontlines in the San Francisco Bay Area and needs this RV, we are accepting applications.  To apply, visit https://RVMatchMaker.ORG/RV

why we're doing it

By facilitating the free exchange of information, we can help frontline workers find affordable secondary housing, so they can protect the people they love from COVID-19.

  • Improve economic outlook. According to The Brookings Institution, many medical workers finances are being stretched to the breaking point. Most workers already spend over 30% of their income on housing, and are also saddled with greater than $100k in student and consumer debt. Providing an RV to self-isolate means that frontline workers are able to pay their bills on time and build long-term savings for their families.
  • Improve mental health and well-being. Having a safe place to self-isolate can have a significant impact on a frontline worker’s mental health. A survey by the New York Times, found that needing isolation housing compounds the stress of their grueling work environment which results in poor sleep and reduced mental health.
  • Improve worker retention/recruitment. According to The Atlantic, 22% of US hospitals do not have adequate staff to support the surge in demand they currently face. By offering frontline workers an affordable secondary housing option, we can reduce potential barriers to accepting employment.
  • Reduce disproportionate impact on economically disadvantaged communities. A study conducted by The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis shows that Black and Latino medical workers often face over-crowded living conditions, causing further viral spread.

More About Our Budget and Thank You Gifts

After our budget is published, IOBY.org approves it and then locks the page so it cannot be changed. We can only spend the money raised as stated.

We felt it is important to tell you more about our budget and thank you gifts, so you can find that information at https://rvmatchmaker.org/budget


(This bumper sticker is a thank you gift for donations of $25 or more.)
(We hope this brings you and the people around you smiles across the miles!)

budget

The following is our best estimate of costs for the first 30 days.  We will advise you if we need to update this.

$ 2,250     PR Representative (Required to manage interruptions, professionally and consistently.)
$   620     Platform Software Fees, estimated and discounted.  Based on 500 subscribers.
$   360     Platform Software Fees already spent.  Receipts available.
$   275     Misc Supplies & Used Computer. Already spent.  Split over 3 fundraising cycles, Receipts available.
$ 3,505     Approximate total costs for first 30 days

To date we have had significant in kind donations and offers for donations.  We have utilized $5,000 in in-kind donations and have another $10,000 in donated services available to utilize, which include state ID verification, if needed.



PROJECT FUNDING NEEDED = $3,505
ioby Platform Fee waived
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)
$108
TOTAL TO RAISE = $3,613

Please note: ioby fees are estimated and will be calculated based on totals at the end of the campaign.

updates

RVMatchMaker Update Jan. 22, 2021

Our team did not meet in person last weekend in Lake County as planned to send the bumper stickers because the home rental I applied for did not work out.  I had to stay in the Bay Area and continue searching. I relocated from Paradise on December 4th and it took 7 weeks to find housing.  I believe I have finally secured a rental and the paperwork/move-in should be complete next week.

It's INCREDIBLE that additional delays also happened because of the firestorms and severe air quality which forced me to evacuate for nearly 3 months. Many of you know I have lung issues and am in a high risk COVID category.

Five years of firestorm volunteer experience is behind RVMatchMaker. I have worked on this platform nearly 7 days a week for 8 months. I ache for every day we are delayed. However, without my own foundation to thrive, there is no way I can go public.  I do not have the capacity to manage communications when my own situation isn't stable.

I have an AMAZING team of interns who have been very patient with me through this.  They are always positive and consistently working on improving the platform each week. For that they will always have my most PROFOUND gratitude.  Over time, I have really grown to appreciate the unique talent and spirit of each person on our team.

The need for these RVs to protect frontline families will easily last many more months and the potential to improve lives remains quite significant.

We are probably going to lose another 100,000 people in the next 30 days...  That's how fast the situation is changing out there. Please, please, please double down on washing hands and cleaning frequently contacted surfaces.  Stay home if you can.  

Being vaccinated means you probably won't get sick because you produce antibodies, but you can make other people sick, so vaccinated people MUST also keep masks on.

We are finishing our social media set-up now and will send out a newsletter within a week, are ready to send the bumper stickers now and go public after February 1.  

If new visitors would like to order a bumper sticker (see image in update below), we have a few left in this current batch before we need to reorder. Follow this link to order: https://RVMatchMaker.ORG/Fundraiser

Thanks for your founding support.  We wish you well.
~ Your Friends at RVMatchMaker.ORG

We are so excited and grateful!

We are starting our next wave of support requests to cover platform costs.  I'm so excited and grateful for our founding patrons that are supporting us. 

On Wednesday I will be meeting one of our 5 interns in person, Diana.  She is from Lake County and is a Spanish speaker.  That skill is really important because the most adversely impacted population are the housekeepers and janitors that you NEVER hear about in the news.  They have to clean the COVID units and are at the most risk because of their socio-economic circumstance.  Naturally they will live in denser housing than their colleagues.

We will help all qualified frontline workers, but based on my prior disaster experience, this population is the most adversely impacted in disasters.  Diana knows this personally because she witnessed the devastation of her community in 2015 with the Valley Fire.  She will be helping to manage our campaign perks and in fact has our first 20 bumper stickers which we will mail to you THIS WEEK!  =)

This is the thank you gift we are sending you for donation of $25 or more  =)

This is a picture from the Valley Fire that is very close to where Diana lives:

Thanks for giving me a reason to smile today!
~ Kimberly

RVMatchMaker. Update Jan 2 2021

Hello and Happy New Year!

We are now on the path to leaving the darkness of winter behind us, to receiving a national leader likely to be better for national morale and health, and to the days in which we can freely hug our loved ones again.

I'm very overdue to give you for an update, so here's the latest:

I called the first hospital on our very long list of COVID positive facilities and spoke to the public information officer.  To my surprise the following day the chief operating officer contacted me directly with great excitement about our offer for support.  They are currently treating about 150 COVID positive patients in serious condition and they have run out of ICU beds.

He has about 15 employees who would like very much to be closer to their families and for some an RV could work for them.  As I anticipated, it is the health care industry paying for the hotels, not our government.  The government program is only for 2 weeks for confirmed or suspected exposure, which is just enough time to clear the disease... but it does not help them with their endless daily exposure to the viral load they are subjected to.

What is now emerging are studies of re-hospitalization for COVID.  Apparently there is significant data to indicate that 15-20% of patients hospitalized are re-admitted within 60 days.  And I'm sure you've heard about the highly contagiuos UK strain of COVID.  ...The strain on the frontline is not ending with the promise of the vaccines.  It adds complication to the stress and uncertainty they are facing and underlines even more clearly how much support is needed for them.

See here what I'm talking about: https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2020/12/25/were-at-a-breaking-point-covid-ambulance-diversons-becoming-common-in-santa-clara-county/

Up to this point I've been diligently creating a scalable platform and have been very, very cautious about exposure to the public.  The volume of communications that this type of project can create is enormous and I am making plans to deal with that. I'm being introduced to a highly experienced PR firm and we have almost completed the first draft of our media kit.

To see a video provided to meet our team and bring the support we need to grow and support the mission, please visit http://RVMatchMaker.org/RV

Being ready to scale and handing my personal situation are my highest priorities.  Those priorities take all the energy I have to give right now.

I have faith that we will receive what we need to be sustained, if I can get the above two priorities sorted.

Thank you for being part of the founding patrons of this project.

Stay well and wonderful!
~ Kimberly

I am giggling and crying at the same time!!!

Thank you to the very generous donors who are helping to cover our basic expenses for launching.

You bring so much light to my heart to know you stand behind me and care about this mission.

This is the bravest and hardest thing I've EVER done in my life.  And I've done bold and hard things before, like getting an engineering certification in French when no one in my class spoke English.  Getting to live in France was a story in itself.  .... I am proud to have graduated with my class and to use those skills today for this platform....  What a journey this life has been.

With this current support, I am now able to start ordering those bumper stickers which will be a huge help with PR and bring smiles to many people, including you.

I'm hoping to connect with Robin Williams former PR rep to see if she would take us on pro-bono.  I have good reason to think she might (another story).  If so that will cut our launch expenses significantly.

So far we've had 387 visitors to our launch page which is wonderful.  The real magic will begin when we connect directly to front line workers.

Thank you being a friend of RVMatchMaker.  I look forward to sharing this journey with you as it unfolds.
With immense gratitude, 
~ Kimberly

Pictures from prior years of my work behind the frontlines of firestorms

This is an RV I donated Christmas eve to a family with triplets after the Tubbs Fire (The video is a cherished memory.)

The picture below is from Paradise.  I was exhausted an rarely recharged my camera batteries.  What I saw during 2018 around Christmas was deeply impactful and no pictures could ever do justice in conveying the scale and emotion of being a witness to this.

Had I not been a witness to these events and learned from experiences of the local people displaced, RVMatchMaker.ORG would not exist.

photos

This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration

donors

  • Sara H.
  • Bill Williams
  • Anonymous
  • William D.
  • Tracy & Robert Blum
  • Calvin
  • Runn V.
  • Anonymous