Experts stress the importance of savings and having an emergency fund to cover you for three to six months should you need it. That’s tough on a limited income, which is why it’s good to know certain services and companies are helping during the coronavirus outbreak.
Whether you need food, financial help, or some other service, here are some ways to get it:
1. Local Schools
Most school districts have decided to close their doors across the country. This puts a significant strain on families when you consider the high costs of childcare.
Despite the bad news, some districts have announced that they will continue to offer free or low-cost meals to those who need them.
Contact your school district to find out if you qualify.
2. The Salvation Army
This nonprofit organization has stepped to the plate once again to help the most vulnerable with food and shelter.
Although they’ve been forced to change how they operate certain soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and the like due to social distancing, they’re still offering help in the form of:
- Food delivery.
- Meals in to-go boxes.
- Emotional and spiritual care via video calls.
- And more.
By dialing 211 on your phone or visiting their website, you can get help with paying your bills, securing housing assistance, finding food, and more.
While this service linked to the United Way has been around for a while, it’s now ramped up its efforts to help those impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
4. Modest Needs
You can contact Modest Needs if you’ve suddenly run into trouble due to COVID-19. The nonprofit offers grants to low-income families when times get tough, and they can give you help to cover your medical bills, utilities, or rent.
If you’re an hourly worker, you’ll be glad to know that Modest Needs has launched a fund to help those who’ve lost income due to the coronavirus outbreak. Visit their site at the link above to learn more and apply for financial support.
5. Utility Companies
While we could make a long list of ways to reduce your electricity, gas, and water bills, there’s a better way to handle this issue: Contact your utility companies directly.
Some have already announced that they will not turn off services due to a lack of payment during the COVID-19 outbreak. Don’t assume that your company has done this already, though. Instead, call them up and see what your options are.
You may have to explain your hardship to work out a payment plan or keep your utilities on. If they agree, try to get something in writing, should you run into any problems down the road.
6. Food Banks
COVID-19 and the call for social distancing have made life quite complicated for food banks. Many have seen a reduction in volunteers and food donations, which limits their ability to help.
Still, you may find food banks in your area that are offering pickup service and emergency food boxes. Feeding America is one of them that provides services in every state.