Local Resources

local resources

Chicagoans Going Beyond to Help Our City Back The Fight Against COVID-19

GOING BEYOND FOR CHICAGOANS

*UPDATED MAY 28, 2020*

During this unprecedented time, many Chicago-based organizations continue to back the fight for our youth and communities by providing meals, learning opportunities, and resources to those who are unable to access them.

Below we have gathered useful links that include information from educational resources to emergency assistance through the City of Chicago. Links in red are the newest additions. Please see below and check back often for updates.

We also recommend you bookmark these links to local news organizations and official Illinois government websites that are also providing resources lists and information.

MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES

Thank you to The Kennedy Forum Illinois for researching mental health resources available onlineThey have compiled a list of sites that provide factual information and useful strategies. These include: 

If you need one-on-one assistance or are having thoughts of harm to yourself, these resources are always available to you: 

CPS, EDUCATION, AND CHILDCARE RESOURCES

Illinois announces childcare assistance for essential workers

Effective April 1st, all essential workers in health care, human services, essential government services, and essential infrastructure now qualify for the state’s Child Care Assistance Program. This expansion of eligibility includes those working as nurses and doctors, supporting staff in hospitals, grocery store clerks and food producers.

Full details and applications for assistance are available on the Department of Human Services (IDHS) website DHS.illinois.gov/helpishere and coronavirus.illinois.gov.

Child care centers that are interested in re-opening as emergency child centers are able to apply for a permit through the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. Information is available on the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development website.

The Dovetail Project is delivering baby care and personal care supplies to families struggling to make ends meet.

The 24-hour fatherhood support line initiative is open to all fathers living in Chicago between the ages of 17 and 30-years-old.

For assistance, text the word DOVETAIL to 56525. If you are interested in donating to the program or to learn more, visit https://thedovetailproject.org.

ABC 7 Chicago has conveniently gathered a full page of free educational resources for kids while they’re home. 

Enrichment Learning Resources 

CPS is sharing educational resource packets organized by grade level. These packets include a range of activities that students can work on at home independently, with family members, or with other adults. Some activities may require guidance from an adult to get started. Resources are categorized into two types: 

Independent Projects 

These projects cover a range of different topics and skills. They may be spread out over multiple days. 

Enrichment Activities 

These activities are organized into Read, Write, Move, Design, and Solve categories so you can engage with your child in many different ways while at home. 

Some of these options are digital and require Internet access. 

CPS is Working to Provide Healthy Meals for CPS Families

While schools are closed, CPS will provide our students with healthy meals. CPS families can pick up free food boxes at any CPS school, with the exception of Vaughn Occupational High School and Sheridan Math and Science Academy, that will contain three days of breakfast and lunch for every student in the household. Food pick-up will be held outdoors, and Safe Passage workers will be on their normally assigned routes while families are getting meals. If you need assistance, please call the CPS Command Center at 773-553-KIDS (5437) or email familyservices@cps.edu

The Chicago Sun-Times created a list of need to know facts about the CPS food distributions, click this link for more info. 

List of Frequent Asked Questions from CPS on COVID-19 

CPS has gathered all of the current FAQ’s at the moment and have shared their responses here. 

Khan Academy is offering free online learning schedules for students from Pre-K to 12th grade

CITY OF CHICAGO PROVIDED RESOURCES

Emergency Rental Assistance 

The Emergency Rental Assistance Program provides financial assistance to Chicago residents, directly related to the prevention of homelessness, to eligible individuals and families who are in danger of eviction in order to stabilize individuals and families in their existing rental unit. 

Illinois Department of Employment Security COVID-19 and Unemployment Benefits

Unemployment benefits may be available to some individuals whose unemployment is attributable to COVID-19. IDES recently adopted emergency rules to try to make the unemployment insurance system as responsive to the current situation as possible.  

CHICAGOANS GOING BEYOND

The Peace House of Englewood 

The Peace House of Englewood at 6402 S. Honore St will remain open as long as possible for those in need of food and shelter. Showers will be available for use as well, according to Zelda Mayer, director of development for the South Side nonprofit. They will also have a nurse coming weekly to educate residents on what the virus is, debunk the myths and help people sort through the medical language. The nurse will let people know what the recommendations are, and help to educate children as well. 

Please contact I Grow Chicago for more information 312-286-7392 or send an email to contact@igrowchicago.org

My Block My Hood My City

MBMHMC will be ensuring seniors have access to hand sanitizer, health supplements, toiletries, and food. Seniors and those living with disability are most at risk in the event of the continued spread of the virus. To donate or request a care package please visit their site at https://www.formyblock.org/viralresponse 

BUSINESSES GOING BEYOND

INTERNET CONNECTION

Comcast Announces Comprehensive COVID-19 Response to Help Keep Americans Connected to the Internet

Visit the link above for more information

  • Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers.  
  • No Disconnects or Late Fees: We will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Our care teams will be available to offer flexible payment options and can help find other solutions. 
  • Internet Essentials Free to New Customers: As announced yesterday, it’s even easier for low-income families who live in a Comcast service area to sign-up for Internet Essentials, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program. New customers will receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service, which is normally available to all qualified low-income households for $9.95/month. 
  • News, Information and Educational Content on X1: For those with school-age students at home, we’ve created new educational collections for all grade levels in partnership with Common Sense Media. Just say “education” into your X1 or Flex voice remote. 
  • Expanding eligibility based on income and to households participating in National School Lunch Program/Head Start
  • Waiving all home internet data overage fees

RCN is offering one month free and free install

Please visit their website or call to confirm your location is in their service area

Charter Communications to Offer Free Access to Spectrum Broadband and Wi-Fi For 60 Days For New K-12 and College Student Households and More To enroll call 1-844-488-8395. Installation fees will be waived for new student households.

ComEd Taking Steps to Lift Up Our Communities During Coronavirus Pandemic

ComEd is suspending disconnects for customers unable to pay their bills and waiving new late payments charges through at least May 1st. ComEd be working with customers on a case-by-case basis to establish payment arrangements and identify energy assistance options to address their specific needs. Please visit the link above for more info.

Fifty/50 Restaurant Group will begin cooking and serving 400 meals per day, for no-contact pickup delivery, to any furloughed and laid-off workers — from restaurants, hotels, salons retail and more — beginning Wednesday. Pickups will be available from 4-6:30 p.m. Tuesdays-Sundayscq at The Fifty/50 sports bar (2047 W. Division St.).

List of donated meals for service industry workers. Compiled by Do312, “the restaurants featured on this list are going above and beyond to help those in need who have been affected by the COVID-19 closings. If you need help during this time, here’s where you can go.”