After a week-long delay, the latest coronavirus relief bill has been signed into law in its original form passed by Congress. This stimulus package provides most Americans a direct payment of $600 ($1,200 per couple; an additional $600 per eligible child). The bill also includes short-term supplemental unemployment benefits, rental assistance, and support to schools, small businesses, and the healthcare industry. We will continue to cover any future developments related to this bill (including Economic Impact Payments) and any subsequent pandemic relief initiatives here on our Working Together blog and social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter).
PART One of Four-Part Blog
To end the year, Community Action’s “Working Together” Blog will highlight the accomplishments of our four program areas during 2020. Today, we begin with Head Start / Early Head Start.
In March of this year, when the coronavirus forced Community Action to close its doors, thousands of households still required our services. Thus, Community Action adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic by establishing and implementing innovative tools and strategies designed to meet the needs of our participants.
For example, in our Head Start and Early Head Start programs, staff immediately arranged for emergency childcare, interactive educational activities, and other vital development services while continuing to communicate with, and serve, Head Start children and their families through social media, text messaging, email, and video software platforms such as Zoom and Google Hangouts.
Moreover, to meet the nutritional needs of our students, Community Action Head Start partnered with other agencies to provide free meals (along with educational materials and critical household items) at weekly food distribution sites in St. Paul. All told, these distribution sites provided Head Start kids with more than 40,000 meals during the spring and early summer months of 2020, an effort which garnered the attention of the National Child and Adult Food Care Program Association (CAFCP) which featured Community Action Head Start in their June newsletter.
Tomorrow, in part two of this four-part blog, Community Action will feature the 2020 accomplishments of our Energy Assistance Program.