Groups around Calif. urgently need healthy volunteers

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the start of a statewide volunteer drive for the coronavirus pandemic Tuesday, as he said many charitable organizations face a critical shortage of healthy assistants.

The website behind the new initiative, Californians For All, will provide a network of resources for people looking to get involved. Residents looking to help can sign up and will be matched with organizations they are best-suited for based on their abilities, availability and location, officials said.

Other ways residents can get involved include donating or volunteering for local food banks and shelters, donating blood, and getting groceries or other essential goods for elderly neighbors and others in need. Learn more here.

People are asked not to volunteer if they have experienced symptoms related to the virus, such as fever, cough or shortness of breath. “Avoid taking risks to keep us all safe,” the website reads, for people questioning whether they are healthy enough to help.

Volunteers are also asked to always practice guidelines from the CDC on cleanliness, including washing hands, using hand sanitizer and practicing social distancing.

The governor said California has 33,261 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19. Of that group, 3,365 are in hospitals and 1,241 are in intensive care units.

“California is flattening the curve, but only if we continue to take this seriously,” Newsom said. “Stay home and practice physical distancing.”

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