Medical Frontliners to Get Free Housing in Philippine Rollout of Global Airbnb Program
Medical frontliners looking for a safe and convenient place to stay while they’re dealing with the COVID-19 crisis will find that their prayers have been answered.
Airbnb, the global online marketplace for lodgings and homestays, is rolling out in the Philippines its Frontline Stays program that will assist healthcare frontliners to find suitable temporary homes. The company is doing this in partnership with the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF).
Expected to be launched in the country this month, Frontline Stays has already offered 100,000 places to stay for people responding to the pandemic, both free and paid, in 160 countries and regions.
In the Philippines, Airbnb and the PDRF, through partner hospitals such as St. Luke’s Medical Center Global City, the Medical City, and Makati Medical Center, will also help pinpoint priority areas by identifying health workers in need of temporary housing.
Airbnb is waiving its commissions for the first 100,000 stays booked through the Frontline Stays program. Hosts can also opt into the program and have the option of opening their homes for free through the company’s Open Homes platform, which was created in 2012 to meet the needs of people requiring emergency housing. Hosts who open their homes for free to house frontliners will receive a cleaning subsidy for each stay.
"Our healthcare workers are among the true heroes of the COVID-19 crisis; they risk their lives every day,” said PDRF President Butch Meily. “Providing temporary housing near their hospital is another way we can support them.”
“From floods to earthquakes and other natural disasters, the Airbnb community has a long history of providing accommodation to those in need when the worst happens,” said Mike Orgill, General Manager (Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan), Airbnb. “We’ve been inspired by the Bayanihan spirit of Filipino hosts and nonprofits who have reached out to us seeking ways to support frontliners.”
The Philippines is the latest country to roll out a local program of Frontline Stays in Asia-Pacific, following local launches in Thailand, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand.
In addition, PDRF partner company Unilever will donate disinfectant kits for hosts who sign up for the program and house healthcare workers.
Airbnb has also launched a donation tool for relief efforts related to COVID-19, with 100 percent going directly to non-profits helping with COVID-19 relief efforts. To donate, go to airbnb.com/openhomes/covid19relief?donate. Hospitals and organizations can also use Airbnb to find accommodations for healthcare professionals, relief workers, and first responders on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response by signing up here.
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