Every day, we learn more about how COVID-19 is impacting people around the globe. Our hearts go out to those who have contracted the virus, their families, and the health workers providing life-saving care. While these people are most directly impacted, the ripple effects of the pandemic reach far beyond. Local nonprofits serving at-risk populations, small businesses that rely on foot traffic, and caretakers for families must all adapt to our new reality of most public places shutting down.
At Twilio.org, we’re committed to doing our part to aid in the crisis. Here’s what we’re doing.
Granting $1.5 million to global and local efforts
To help our global community and the local San Francisco and Denver areas, home to Twilio's largest offices, we’re donating a total of $1.5 million. We're focused on funding organizations driving the medical response to COVID-19 and serving low-income, at-risk populations who will be severely impacted by the virus. We’re giving:
- $500,000 to the UN Foundation’s COVID-19 Response Fund to benefit the World Health Organization.
- $500,000 from our CEO Jeff Lawson and his wife Erica Lawson to the Give2SF fund
- $250,000 to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation’s COVID-19 Regional Response Fund
- $250,000 to the Colorado COVID Relief Fund
We're collaborating with other companies in the technology sector to drive the most impact together, and we’ve taken a pledge with Colorado tech leaders and leaders around the world to work together to #stopthespread.
While we’re committing $1.5 million now to aid in relief efforts, we also recognize that the impact of this virus will continue for a long time. As a result, we will be running an open-call grant round in the coming months to support organizations helping at-risk populations recover from COVID-19. Sign up for alerts on upcoming grant opportunities here.
Providing crisis response support with our products
As health care organizations, government agencies, and nonprofits race to contain and treat the virus's symptoms, we’ve seen a massive increase in use cases for how communications can help on the front lines of this fight. Based on what we’ve observed from our customers, we’ve compiled best practices for how organizations can deploy technology to directly address the virus, from answering a high volume of inbound requests with intelligent chatbots and voice recordings to building solutions for telehealth.
To make sure organizations supporting direct response efforts can get quick and affordable access to Twilio, our Impact Access program provides Twilio credits for thousands of calls and messages plus additional discounts to organizations that need them. With many volunteer developers and groups building apps to address the virus beyond traditional nonprofits, we’re expanding eligibility to projects specifically related to coronavirus response for the greater good.
Highlighting volunteer and donation opportunities for our employees
Our employees are committed to helping in a personal capacity, too. Through our employee engagement and volunteer program WePledge, we’ve provided a number of opportunities for Twilions to get involved remotely.
Twilio is matching employee donations 2:1 for charitable organizations focused on COVID-19 response, including the CDC Foundation, Global Relief International, Give2Asia, and International Medical Corps. We’ve engaged employees with virtual volunteer activities, including remote mentoring for CodePath (an organization focused on building the pipeline of underrepresented engineers) and volunteering for Tarjimly (an organization providing translation support to refugees impacted by COVID-19). We’ve also made it easy to request a dollar-for-dollar donation match to a local nonprofit of their choice.
Doing right by our customers, employees, and partners
These programs only account for part of what Twilio as a whole is doing. We are also keeping our hourly employees on the payroll at their regular rate during this temporary slowdown in business operations. To help our customers maintain business operations, manage crisis communications, and adapt to remote work, we’re providing best practice content and product support. Furthermore, all of our global offices are closed at least through July 31, 2020, and all of our events will be conducted virtually until further notice. Our developer and customer conference SIGNAL has been postponed and is now scheduled to take place September 30 - October 1 (Superclass will be September 29) and will remain at Moscone West in San Francisco. Finally, Twilio is still hiring and conducting candidate interviews remotely in accordance with government and public health recommendations.
Now, more than ever, we’re seeing the importance of communications to unlock access to help, information, and resources, as well as connect us with our loved ones and coworkers as we support each other through this difficult time. Twilio is committed to doing our part to aid in this crisis.
Reach out to us if you'd like to partner on building solutions to aid in the crisis.
Erin Reilly is the Chief Social Impact Officer at Twilio. She is a leader driving the company to use its unique assets—products, people, and funding—to do good. Through her leadership, thousands of social impact organizations using Twilio are helping more than 100 million people each year.