Resources for SFU communicators during the COVID-19 pandemic

March 19, 2020

As we all navigate the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic we know this is a challenging and stressful time for everyone. We wanted to let you know we will continue to be on Slack to answer any of your questions. You can also reach out to Denise Leech, Angela Wilson, Jeff Hodson, Marianne Meadahl or Ian Young directly for anything specific.

We also wanted to provide some information below that might answer some questions you have that can support your work:

What’s the best source of information on SFU’s response to COVID-19? 

Your best resource – for yourself, your team and the faculty and department you support – is SFU’s COVID-19 FAQ. The page is updated constantly and is full of information on various topics. If you have a question about SFU’s response that is not covered in the FAQ, please email it to covid19@sfu.ca and the team will work to get you an answer. If you have an applicable, organization-wide addition to the FAQs, please email your suggestion to Angela at akwilson@sfu.ca.

What content should we publish on our channels at this time?

Our aim is for COVID-19 messaging to be timely, consistent and sensitive to this evolving situation. Currently we are distributing and amplifying essential COVID content for the community including alternate study and work arrangements, closures, supports, etc. We have suspended all other non-essential content on SFU channels.

We have noticed that everyone is already also taking this approach on their channels. Thank you and we ask that you continue to do so. If you have questions about a specific piece of content, don’t hesitate to reach out for advice.

What content can I post on social?

  1. Amplify messages from the main SFU social media channels.
  2. Share approved social media responses. We have added all the questions and key messages that were previously pinned in the #SFU-Communicators Slack channel to a centralized Google Sheet. This document is also currently pinned in the Slack channel. These messages have been vetted by our media team and can be shared on your social media accounts.
  3. Share helpful SFU information & resources to support your audience’s unique needs relevant to your services.
  4. Share information pertaining to events that have been cancelled or postponed.

Seeking supportive COVID-19 content

We are also working on providing informational news from SFU experts to support our community at this time. Over the next few weeks, SFU will be sharing content on SFU News and our institutional social media channels on topics like exercise and well-being, happiness, social interaction and isolation and managing stress while working remotely. The aim is to provide a regular stream of informative and positive content for our community. If you know an expert, or have a story idea, submit your pitch to the story submission form.

We are also still pitching SFU experts to media, related to the myriad of impacts of COVID-19 as well as research. If you have any questions or suggestions please email or Slack Marianne Meadahl or Jeff Hodson.

Weekly Events and Announcements newsletter for staff and faculty

We are sending out a special COVID edition of the weekly staff and faculty events newsletter this Monday to summarize the essential SFU announcements that have gone out over the last week. If you have an update you want to include that is relevant to all staff and faculty, submit it to the content submission form by the end of the day Friday.

When should we shift back to posting non-essential content?

We hope very soon. Because the situation is still evolving daily, we don’t know yet when we can return to our regular content schedule. We will let you know on Slack as soon as we begin to make that shift.

What’s happening with events?

At this time, the provincial health authorities have issued a directive advising against gatherings larger than 50 people. Ceremonies and Events has put together event planning guidelines and protocol, communication samples and resources regarding COVID-19 on the Ceremonies and Events site: COVID-19 Information for Event Planners.

If you are cancelling or postponing an event don’t forget to update the listing on the SFU Events calendar. Contact Kevin Cherney if you need any help.

Continue to lean on our strong community

In these uncertain times we feel really grateful to be surrounded by a strong community of colleagues like you. As we head into the next couple weeks, don’t be afraid to reach out to us or your other colleagues around the university for support and to stay connected.

Thank you all for your continued patience and support during this unprecedented event. We could not do it without you!

- Communications & Marketing