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School lunches to continue amidst closure

Helsinki grants €300,000 for coronavirus-hit cultural, sports sectors

Published : 20 Mar 2020, 01:43

Updated : 22 Mar 2020, 00:57

  DF Report

File Photo City of Helsinki by Sanna Karppelin/Rhinoceros Oy.

The City of Helsinki on Thursday decided to support shuttered cultural activities, continue school lunches, and stream entertainment following the stalemate situation in the fields due to coronavirus outbreak.

The city has decided to establish an express fund for people and organisations affected by the closure of culture and leisure events, said an official press release.

The city has allotted 300,000 euros, with a maximum of 5,000 euros available per applicant, for these purposes. The fund is aims at inspiring people working in these sectors to come up with innovative solutions and digital means for engaging with the public.

The application period opens on March 23 and will continue until further notice, and the city will process the applications as quickly as possible.

Due to the closures and cancellations brought on by the coronavirus outbreak, the city will not request the return of already-granted assistance for culture and leisure activities, and will offer recipients the flexibility to change their plans in light of the difficult situation.

Earlier this week, the city was compelled to close down libraries, cultural centres, museums and youth centres in order to stop the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

“The coronavirus will mean major financial and operational difficulties for many organisations and players in the cultural arena. We will do our best to help the sector get through this and make sure the people of Helsinki still have the opportunity to enjoy cultural activities that provide valuable experiences. We are pleased to see how many of Helsinki’s employees in the fields of culture, sports and youth work have been actively seeking out new ways to connect with the public,” said Head of Culture and Leisure Division at the City of Helsinki Tommi Laitio.

The new express fund will promote new forms of events and community-building efforts in the fields of culture, sports and youth work, as well as allow for digital advancements that would enable employees in these areas to continue their work.

Meanwhile, school lunches will continue for children who sign up for the service. School lunches will still be served to all interested pupils on March 20 Friday.

After this, from March 23 Monday, school lunches will be served to all pupils that are still attending face-to-face classroom instruction as well as those students who are studying from home but have signed up to receive the food service.

The city will send a message via the Wilma platform with instructions for signing up. It is important that all children who plan on coming to the schools to eat lunch sign up ahead of time to avoid any wastage of food.

School lunches will be arranged in compliance with the current hygiene standards and with due attention to limit close physical contact.