RESOURCES DURING COVID-19

As we follow directives from our local and state leaders to stay at home amid the COVID-19 pandemic, we are committed to helping Chicagoans stay connected to the best resources available to fight the hardships we face. Please monitor this page for updates as the situation continues to evolve.

 

Resources Available:

 

 

Food Resources

>> Grocery Store Status Map – Due to recent events some grocery stores have closed. Check this map to find the nearest open grocery store.

 

>> Greater Chicago Food Depository – To find open food pantries, soup kitchens, mobile food distributions, and shelters in Cook County, visit the Greater Chicago Food Depository's online directory. 

 

>> Free Meal Pickups –  Free meal pick-ups are available every Sunday from 12:00 – 1:00 PM at YWCA Laura Parks & Mildred Francis Center, 6600 S. Cottage Grove Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637. 

 

>> Chicago Public Schools – Chicago Public Schools are open Monday – Friday, 9am-1pm, to provide meals for everyone under 18 years old (breakfast and lunch). 

 

>> Meals on Wheels  Meals on Wheels is a program supporting homebound seniors with meal deliveries in the Chicago area. They are continuing to operate.  

 

>> Grocery Store Special Shopping Hours – Several grocery retailers now have dedicated shopping hours for older community members and other high-risk groups to shop for groceries without crowds of other people. 

 

Housing Resources

>> Illinois Housing Development Authority Emergency Rental Assistance – Emergency rental assistance  and mortgage assistance for households who have lost income due to COVID-19

 

>> The Rental Assistance Program and The Chicago Housing Assistant – The Department of Housing and the Department of Family and Support Services have several initiatives to provide housing cost assistance to Chicago residents impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

 

>> Cook County Eviction Information – Learn more about your rights as a tenant during the COVID-19 crisis.

 

>> The Federal Housing Finance Agency – The Federal Housing Finance Agency is offering hardship programs for homeowners with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans. 

 

>> ShelterList – This online directory provides a list of shelters offering assistance to the homeless. 

 

>> Community Service Centers – These centers, located across the City of Chicago, can help individuals and families needing access to a wide range of resources, including shelter, food, clothing, and job training.

 

 

Utilities - Gas/Electric

>> CEDA – programs will assist income-eligible households with energy costs by making a payment directly to the utility company(s) on behalf of the households.

 

>> Illinois Commerce Commission – This emergency order aims to protect customers of private water, electric, and natural gas utilities in Illinois (including People's Gas and ComEd). 

 

>> Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) – This program helps eligible low-income households pay for basic utilities—heat, gas, and electric.

 

>> Comcast – Comcast announced new steps they’re taking to help people stay connected to the Internet, including free access to network hotspots, free unlimited data, and low-cost options for internet essentials.  

 

>> AT&T Access – AT&T’s Access program provides a low-cost option for home Internet access to low-income households.

 

 

Small Business Assistance  

>> Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) – This grant is to help owners of commercial and industrial properties within specific Tax Increment Financing (TIF) districts to repair or remodel their facilities for their own business or on behalf of tenants.

 

>> Community Recover Fund – Community Recovery Initiative is an economic relief program for small business and independent contractors located within suburban Cook County.

 

>> My Block My Hood, My City – This local nonprofit is providing aid to any small business that has been impacted by looting.

 

>> Chicago Community Loan Fund – This booklet offers all the resources and information that would be helpful for developers, small businesses, and nonprofits organizations during COVID-19.

 

>> Chibizhub – This resource provides assistance to small business through webinars on how to prepare to apply for grants and loans, and how to shift your business to online.

 

>> Grant Station – This search engine provides grant opportunities for nonprofit, small businesses, journalists, and artist. 

 

>> Hello Alice – This site offers grant opportunities and other resources to small business owners.

 

>> The Red Backpack Fund – This fund provides small grants to women-owned businesses and nonprofits, with applications accepted monthly. 

 

>> Small Business Resource Navigator – This program provides individualized support to neighborhood small businesses as they seek financial support and resources during the COVID-19 outbreak.

 

>> U.S. Small Business Administration – These low-interest federal disaster loans are available to small businesses to cover working capital. 

 

>> Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) Resources – This site provides information about financial assistance and resources available to small businesses throughout Chicago.

 

 

Employee Resources 

>> Money Geek – Assist those who have been affected financially by the pandemic, we worked with financial experts to create a guide on Layoffs and Lost Wages Due to Coronavirus. Their guide discusses how to file for unemployment, finding financial assistance, expert advice and much more!

 

>> Chicago Contact Tracing Corps – Chicago received a grant to hire, train, and support 600 individuals to conduct "contact tracing". Learn more and apply here!

 

>> Sweet Relief – Financial assistance to musician who have been affected by COVID-19.

 

>> Skills for Chicagoland’s Future and the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership – These organizations are offering resources useful to job seekers. 

 

>> One Fair Wage – This resource is providing cash assistance to restaurant workers, car service drivers, delivery workers, personal service workers, and more who need the money they aren’t getting to survive. 

 

>> Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership – This resource is listing open paid jobs for essential businesses. You can also text “WORK NOW” to 474747 to be connected to the employment resources.

 

>> U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division – This resource provides information on COVID-19 and the American Workplace, including paid leave requirements under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

 

>> Learn more about Unemployment benefits in the state of Illinois and apply here

 

 

Family, Individual, and Other Resources

>> True to Life Foundation – This organization is giving away free diapers Wednesdays from 11am-1pm at their main office, 1712 E. 87th.

 

>> COVID-19 Testing Sites – Even though we have moved into Phase III, many testing sites are still available. Find a testing site near you!

 

>> Parenting Playbook – The Chicago Children's Museum has created this book for parents and caregivers with tips, activities for kids, and interesting reads.

 

>> COVID-19 African American Relief Fund – This fund will provide support to black businesses, safety gear to front line workers, and emergency housing for low-income families and individuals affected by COVID-19.

 

>> COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information for Illinois Taxpayers – This resource provides information and resources to help and provide information to Illinois taxpayers, businesses, and others affected by the coronavirus.

 

>> Resources for the Chicago Arts Community – This list provides resources for the Chicago arts community.

 

>> The Fatherhood Relief Fund  This fund is designed to deliver essential baby care and personal care supplies to young fathers and their children as they shelter in place during the COVID-19 crisis. 

 

>> My Block My Hood My City Senior Response Packages – Local non-profit, My Block My Hood My City is ensuring seniors in Chicago have access to hand sanitizer, health supplements, toiletries, and food. 

 

>> Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) – This program provides temporary financial assistance for pregnant women and families with one or more dependent children.

 

>> City of Chicago Coronavirus Response Center – For the most up to date information on the City of Chicago’s response to COVID-19, visit the Coronavirus Response Center.  

 

>> Additional Resources – Your Ward may be developing a community relief group for your neighborhood, so check to see what's happening by you.

 

>> The White House announced the federal filing deadline for taxes is moving to July 15th.  

 

>> The federal government has suspended interest payments on student loans. 

 

>> Illinois’ Secretary of State has issued a new order that regarding driver’s licenses, ID’s, permits, vehicle registrations, and parking stickers.

 

 

Mental Health Resources

>> The Illinois Call4Calm hotline is a great resource if you or a loved one are struggling with stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic and need emotional support.

 

>> Connect with a NAMI Chicago Helpline mental health counselor by calling 311 or directly at 833-626-4244.

 

>> Connect with Bright Star Community Outreach's trauma counseling helpline at 833-TURN-123.

 

>> Access free teletherapy services at Chicago Department of Public Health Mental Health Centers by calling 312-747-1020.

 

>> For after-hours support, contact Crisis Text Line which serves anyone, in any type of crisis, 24-hours a day. Instructions: Text HOME to: 741741 to access a trained crisis counselor.

 

 

Morale Boosting Resources

Sheltering-in-place is no walk in the park. Below are some ways to stay healthy and make the most of your time at home:

>> Enjoy live concerts from the comfort of your home! See who's playing here.

 

>> No gym? No problem! Here is a list of livestream workouts to get you sweating.

 

>> Get cultured and visit museums across the world here.

 

>> With so much time at home, it's a perfect time to make sure it's in tip-top shape. Learn more about how to maintain your home and how spring cleaning is actually good for you.

 

>> Become an Ivy Leaguer and take complimentary courses at some of the top schools in the nation here.

 

>> Big time animal lover? Check out live streams of all kinds of animals from zoos, aquariums, and other humane animal organizations.

 

>> Dust off those cobwebs on your guitar and finally learn some of your favorite tunes with three months of free lessons from Fender.

 

>> Stream movies from the Musicbox Theater & Gene Siskel.

 

>> Looking for laughs? Attend an online improv class.

 

 

 

Updated 8/10/20

 

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