Where to go for help: a coronavirus resource list

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Communities all over the country are being impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. You are not alone. Whether you are just got laid off, are on quarantine, own a small business, or have lost gig work, there are resources designed to help keep you afloat.

The MSR has compiled a list of current financial resources, loans, and other programs to help you get through this crisis.

Centers For Disease And Control

This is the number one place to learn about further impacts, spread, and response to the virus. Here is a link to general guidance for businesses and employers.

Info: www.cdc.gov

MN Department of Health

Find up-to-date local info on the COVID-19 virus, from the number of positive cases to the latest medical recommendations.

Info: www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html

Financial Help

If you have lost your job or ordered not to return to your job because of the outbreak, be sure to apply for unemployment insurance. It also covers parents whose children cannot attend school, daycare or childcare provider because of cancelations or outbreaks. Apply Monday through Friday and Sunday, from 6 am to 8 pm. 

Info: www.uimn.org/applicants/index.jsp

FEMA Disaster Unemployment Assistance

If you are self-employed and no longer able to work because of the coronavirus outbreak, you can apply for disaster assistance. You must first apply (and get denied) for regular unemployment benefits. 

Info: https://www.benefits.gov/benefit/597

United Way 2-1-1

This a free service that can help connect you to local resources like housing and utility assistance, healthcare, and emergency information and disaster relief.

Info: www.unitedway.org/our-impact/featured-programs/2-1-1

Hennepin County Emergency Programs

The county offers such emergency services as temporary shelter, rent payments, utility bills, and foreclosure prevention.

Info: www.hennepin.us/residents/human-services/emergency-assistance or 1-844-803-8466

Ramsey County Emergency Programs 

All financial assistance intake appointments must currently be completed over phone. If you need to schedule an appointment or speak with your financial worker, call​ 651-266-4444.

Info: www.ramseycounty.us/residents/assistance-support/assistance/financial-assistance

MPHA Stable Homes Stable Schools

A Housing Stability Fund will provide one-time emergency funds to additional families of students at risk of homelessness. The program also provides rental assistance and personalized wrap-around services to work toward eliminating barriers to long-term housing stability. 

Info: www.mphaonline.org/stablehomes

Two Months FREE Internet Access

Comcast offers discounted Internet service for $9.95/month plus tax (less than $20 total) to low-income households. Eligible households include those receiving public assistance, such as the National School Lunch Program, housing assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, and SSI. New applicants will also receive two free months service if they apply by April 30.

Info: www.internetessentials.com/covid19

Federal Student Loan Payments

Got student loans? You can apply to suspend payments for 60 days. Contact your provider (such as Navient, Nelnet, FedLoan Servicing, or Great Lakes) to request the suspension. If you are already over a month behind, it will automatically be suspended.

Defer Mortgage Payments For Up To 12 Months

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and other lenders have been directed to help you reduce or completely pause payments for up to 12 months without fear of foreclosure. But don’t just stop paying! Call your lender to work out the details.

SBA Disaster Assistance Loans

The U.S. Small Business Administration is now offering small businesses impacted by COVID-19 up to $2M in low-interest federal disaster loans. Applications can be completed online.

Info: www.disasterloan.sba.gov/ela

DEED Emergency Loans for small businesses

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is creating an emergency loan program to help Minnesota small business owners who need immediate assistance to meet their families’ basic needs during COVID-19 closures.

DEED expects loan applications will available later this week through its lender network. Minnesota small businesses should send questions about this emergency loan program to ELP@state.mn.us

Info: mn.gov/deed

Facebook Small Business Grants Program

Facebook is offering up to $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 small businesses affected by COVID-19. The funds will assist with rent and operational costs, along with help keep businesses connected with their workforce and customers.  

Info: www.facebook.com/business/boost/grants

Springboard for the Arts’ Personal Emergency Relief Fund

The fund has been expanded to assist Minnesota’s artist community who have lost income from scheduled contracts and performances that were canceled due to coronavirus measures. Artists can request up to $500.

Info: www.springboardforthearts.org/additional-resources/personal-emergency-relief-fund

Twin Cities Music Community Trust

Provides funds to entertainment workers, including musicians, bartenders, servers, stagehands, janitors, etc., who have lost work due to the coronavirus outbreak. 

Info: www.twincitiesmusiccommunitytrust.org


Emergency Food

There are over 400 local food shelves that can provide immediate, emergency food services in your community. We’ve listed a few below, find more here: www.hungersolutions.org/find-help

Second Harvest Heartland

Second Harvest Heartland is providing emergency food boxes for community members experiencing hunger.  Click here to find a food shelf near you.

Info: https://www.2harvest.org/who–how-we-help/how-to-get-help

New Creation Baptist Church, 1414 E. 48th Street, Minneapolis; 612-825-6933

The food shelf offers pre-packaged bags of milk, meat, bread, fruit, salad and more every Saturday of the month from 10 am to 2 pm. The food shelf is closed on the fifth Saturday of any month with five weeks. Clients should bring a state I.D. to register with the food shelf.

Info: https://www.facebook.com/NCBCfoodshelf

New Salem Missionary Baptist Church Food Delivery For Seniors

Senior citizens who are residents of Elliott Park, Bryn Mawr, North Minneapolis and/or downtown Minneapolis, can sign up for a free home-cooked meal delivered to their homes courtesy of New Salem Missionary Baptist Church and Sen. Bobby Joe Champion.

Info: Call 612-250-8799 to sign up

St. Paul Public Schools Food Services

St Paul Public Schools serves food to families on bus routes, at schools and via home delivery for those in need. On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10-11 am (as supplies last) families can pick up food at Battle Creek Middle School, Cherokee Heights Elementary, Como Park Senior High, Harding Senior High, Highland Park Senior High and Johnson Senior High. Buses deliver meals on their regular morning routes Wednesday for 7:30 am schools; Thursday for 8:30 am schools and Friday for 9:30 am schools.

Info: spps.org/ns

Community Food Response, 3945 10th Ave. NW, Rochester (The Exchange ); 507-281-5061

The food shelf distributes pre-packaged bags to clients Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 5-6 pm.

Info: www.communityfoodresponse.org

List compiled by Stephenetta (isis) Harmon