Resources For A Difficult Time
In this time of great need and deep uncertainty in the US and globally, here is a quick primer on where you might seek local help:
- At a basic level, protecting yourself and helping stop the spread of the virus to others is key. If you have not yet reviewed, visit the CDC guidelines here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/prevention.html
- 211 is an essential go-to resource for referrals to local services and help whether during crisis or around the year. They connect callers to a knowledgeable community resource specialist near them. In 2018, they connected they made over 12 million connections to needed resources. Simply call 211 or visit http://www.211.org/
- This is a particularly difficult period for small businesses. The local Chamber of Commerce is a great source of first-line information. The Small Business Administration also offers a series of useful links: https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources
- If you are interested in what local or state governments can do to better support small businesses, here are some steps being tried: https://ilsr.org/how-state-and-local-governments-are-helping-small-businesses-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic-2/ and more on this here as well: https://www.brookings.edu/blog/the-avenue/2020/03/16/how-cities-are-helping-workers-and-small-businesses-during-the-coronavirus-crisis/
- The folks at Rural Assembly remind us to look for and celebrate the helpers in our communities and have compiled a list of resources for rural places: https://ruralassembly.org/in-hard-times-look-for-the-helpers/
- Similarly, Voices for Healthy Kids has compiled a resource list for those working with youth, schools, and families: https://voicesforhealthykids.org/internal/coronavirus-covid-19-resources-you-can-use
- The CDC also has a good list for help with coping and mental health during the COVID crisis: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html and this article from PBS NewsHour reminds us why attending to mental well-being is particularly necessary during this crisis: https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/why-your-mental-health-may-be-suffering-in-the-covid-19-pandemic
- If you are truly interested in up to date COVID information on the science, spread, and global situation of the disease, Johns Hopkins provides a free once-daily e-newsletter. Subscribe and find other beneficial information here: http://www.centerforhealthsecurity.org/resources/COVID-19/index.html
- Parenting during these times might become ever more challenging. Austin Kleon shares the best parenting advice he’s ever heard.
- There are a host of streaming concerts, talks, readings, performances and much more. Billboard is updating an ongoing list of on-line music events now accessible or upcoming: https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/pop/9335531/coronavirus-quarantine-music-events-online-streams
- All of these links and opportunities highlight the need for people to actually be able to access the internet. The digital divide in the US is real. A 2019 report from Pew Trusts described this divide, as over 21 million people in the United States do not have a connection, including nearly 3 in 10 people in rural communities. Many utilities, cable companies, and internet service providers are offering free or easy access to individuals – inquire locally and help neighbors and friends connect if safe to do so.