By Beth Vogel, Marketing & Events Manager, Office of Children and Families
As we move into a modified green phase, life continues to shift and change. Finances are tight for many and stress of the unknown is real. The information below highlights resources for family safety, financial and emotional well-being, and early childhood education.
Food, financial, and employment resources
- Where to find Free Food and Meals during COVID-19:The City and partners are committed to ensuring that all Philadelphians have food in spite of the challenges caused by COVID-19. Find a food site near you.
- Those who need help paying for electricity may qualify for LIHEAP. Applications for its Recovery Crisis Program are being accepted. The program runs through August 31, 2020, or until money runs out. The maximum benefit is $800.
- A second round of rental assistance is now available for Philadelphia tenants affected by COVID-19. Renters and landlords may submit their application online, by fax, or by mail. Learn more and apply for rental assistance.
- The City of Philadelphia is extending its water shutoff protection measure. Both residential and commercial water customers won’t face shutoffs for non-payment of bills until August 31. Learn more about Philadelphia’s water shutoff protection measure.
- Whether you need to find a job, change jobs, or polish your job search skills, PA CareerLink® Philadelphia can help. Access job and training opportunities today for a brighter career tomorrow. Questions? Call 1-833-750-5627.
- If you ran out of your regular unemployment compensation (UC) and federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) you may qualify for 13 additional weeks of payments through the state’s Unemployment Compensation Extended Benefits program.
- Essential Businesses Hiring: These Philadelphia-area businesses are seeking employees.
- Mortgage and Renting guidance: If you can’t pay your mortgage or rent help is available.
- Free pregnancy, baby, and toddler supports during COVID-19: Find pick-up sites for free diapers and baby food, as well as virtual pregnancy, breastfeeding, and family supports.
- Summer activities and resources for families and early learning providers.
- Check out how to keep kids and families busy, engaged, safe, and healthy this summer. This post is updated frequently.
- Kids can learn and have fun with free out-of-school-time summer programs! Enroll today!
- Stay cool this summer. The City turned on spraygrounds and spray features at 91 Parks & Recreation facilities. Spraygrounds will be open to the public weekdays from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. and 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends. Residents can find their nearest sprayground here.
Safety and wellness resources
Here are tips and resources for managing difficult situations and remaining calm and in control of your feelings.
- You can’t support anybody else if you’re not supporting yourself first. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, alone, or just need to talk, call 1-855-284-2494 to speak to skilled and compassionate staff who can help. Staff are available to listen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can also text “PA” to 741-741 for access to the PA Crisis Text Line. For TTY, dial 724-631-5600.
- Encouraging your child to wear a mask: Tips for parents and caregivers. Wearing a mask is one of our best strategies to protect ourselves and the people around us from COVID-19. We should all be wearing masks when we are not at home and continue to stay at least 6 feet away from people we do not live with (social distancing). Masks are not recommended for children under two years of age. However, we know that even for children two and older, getting used to wearing a mask can be challenging. Here are some ways to practice getting your child comfortable with face masks.
- Check out this comprehensive website for mental and emotional health needs from #MindPHL.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has published a tipsheet for parents and caregivers with tips for healthy ways to manage a child’s behavior during COVID-19.
- The School District of Philadelphia and Uplift Center for Grieving Children are providing the Philly HopeLine, offering counseling services for students, parents and guardians. Call or text 1-833-PHL-HOPE (1-833-745-4673), Monday through Fridays from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. and holidays, Saturday and Sundays from 12 p.m to 4 p.m.
- AAP also offers guidance for caregivers of babies.
- If you feel like you are getting angry and might lose control when your baby cries, it’s okay to take a break. Remember, it is never okay to shake, throw, hit, slam, or jerk any child! Read more tips from AAP for safely calming a crying baby.
Childcare and education resources
- Guide: What reopening means for childcare: As childcare centers reopen with care, they must follow Safe Mode guidance from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health. The reopening guidance includes restrictions on the number of participants and requirements for masks, physical distance between participants, and handwashing—all to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
- Watch this Health Department video demonstrating the guidance that childcare and early learning centers must follow when they reopen.
- PHLpreK is enrolling: The City’s PHLpreK program is getting ready to welcome your child and family at over 130 locations. If your child will be 3 or 4 by September 1, enroll today for free, quality instruction beginning this fall. Enroll by visiting PHLpreK.org or calling 1-844-PHL-PREK.
- Need help accessing technology and the internet? Digital Navigators can help you access affordable internet and support your technology needs. They are available by phone and email.