COVID-19 PANDEMIC RESPONSE and RECOVERY

Your generosity will help our community respond, recover, and rebuild to be more equitable and resilient. 

It's not getting any easier. Across the world, COVID-19 deaths continue to rise. In the U.S., the economic fallout continues to hit low-wage Americans the hardest, along with people of color and those lacking a college degree. One in 4 adults have had trouble paying bills, especially rent or mortgage payments. One in 6 have borrowed money from friends or gotten food from a food bank. Half the adults who lost a job due to COVID-19 are still unemployed. And 211, the go-to information resource in the U.S. and Canada, is still fielding more than double its normal calls, mostly for help with housing, bills and food. At the same time, community services are strained, unable to meet demand.

We’re doing all we can to mitigate  immediate  impact,  but no one knows what's required to rebuild communities while additional waves of the virus hit.  We must rebuild better, reimagining a "new normal" that results in more equitable and resilient communities.

It is in times of need that we discover the full impact of a community united.

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Thank you to our partners who have come together from philanthropy, government, and business to support our community through the COVID-19 Crisis Fund.

Cargill

Greenville Area Community Foundation

Meijer

DTE

EightCap, Inc

Mizcan

Consumer's Energy

Tom & Chris Kohn

Greenville Youth Advisory Council

Kerschen Family Fund

Jan Wheelock

Clifford Bedore

Linda Stafford

Kimberly & Mark Peck

Ionia Rotary

Ionia Community Foundation

Michigan One Credit Union

Jay & Liz McClellan

Greenville Lions Club

Delta Dental Foundation

Mercantile Bank

Laurie Tissue

Thomas and Cathy Cornell

Kimberly Essenburg

Kenny Schoenborn

Cara Lindemood

Hungerford Nichols CPAs + Advisors

Randall Tower

Toni Wenger

Caswell & Co.

Mary Miel

Faith & Kim Peterson

Jennifer Stauffer

Mary Schoenborn

Donald & Deanna Veitengruber

Linda VanHouten

Gerald Ritter

Kristi Zuverink

Joyce Zimmer

Sandra Miller

Janine Nierenberger

Cheryl Granzo

Jeff Blanchard

Suzanne Hoseth-Kreeger

Linda McKnight

Citizens for Montcalm Libraries

Don Lenneman

Roger and Cheryl Thelen

David and Mary Malicki

Grace Peterson

Kelly Dewald

Donald and Bertha Smucker

Haley McLean

Teresa Boike

Melanie Steiner

Cindy Hill

Steven and Susan Fish

Eric Linder

Deb Koepke

Tri-County Schools

Saranac Community Schools

Leppinks Food Center

Ionia Fairgrounds

Greenville Area Schools

Belding Area Schools

Central Montcalm Schools

Jorgi's Marketplace

Endeavor Center

Helping Hands

Saranac Community Church

Shiloh CommunityChurch

Zion Community Food Pantry

First Church of God

Barrie's House

Trinity Church

Resources

COVID-19 Mini Grants

ALICE and COVID-19

Feeding America Food Truck schedule for Montcalm and Ionia counties.

This schedule only includes trucks organized through United Way Montcalm-Ionia Counties. If you would like to see a complete list of food pantries and food distribution through Feeding America please click here. Check back regularly as more trucks are added!

Food usually runs out with 45-50 minutes of start time so please make sure to arrive on time. You will stay in your car throughout the process.

  • Thursday, October 22nd at 4:30pm at Montcalm Community College
Thank you to our partner organizations that are helping to schedule and organize these food trucks: 
  • First Church of God
  • Helping Hands
  • Endeavor Center
  • Barrie's House
  • First Congregational Church
  • Zion Community Food Pantry
  • Shiloh Community Church
  • Saranac Community Church
  • Montcalm ISD
  • Ionia ISD
  • Feeding America West Michigan

2-1-1

If you need assistance finding food, paying household bills, accessing free childcare, or other essential services, dial United Way’s 2-1-1 to speak to someone who can help.

The COVID-19 situation in the United States is evolving rapidly as more becomes known about the virus, how it is spread, and how it affects people. For the most accurate and timely information, visit the CDC’s website or monitor CDC social medial channels. This page is being kept up-to-date as regularly as possible with answers to the most common questions 211 receives.

If you are looking for guidance about how to conduct business as a school administrator, non-profit or faith-based organization staff member, business owner, or event planner, the CDC has provided detailed information for different sectors.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.  

Health Insurance and Medical Expenses

If you have health insurance, visit the website for your provider or contact their customer support line with any questions about coverage for COVID-19 testing and treatment. Many healthcare insurers are also making telemedicine available to customers for low or no cost.

If you do not have health insurance, you may be eligible for benefits through your state. Visit this website to explore options based on your household income, children in the home, and state.

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (cough, fever, and shortness of breath) and are concerned that you cannot afford to seek treament or a test, contact your medical provider or the nearest Urgent Care facility to seek guidance. Free testing for COVID-19 is becoming available in many places, but medical care may still incur a charge. Be sure to ask questions about cost if you seek medical care or treatment.

   

Home Internet Access

If you do not have internet access at home, or cannot afford to maintain it, but need internet for work or school, there are several options available through providers:

Additionally, many internet providers have announced that they are waiving late payment fees, increasing caps on internet speeds, and will not disconnect customers for not paying monthly bills on time. If you have questions or concerns about your internet connection, contact your provider or visit their website for more information.

Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans for Small Businesses

SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance for a small business. To learn more about the process for accessing SBA's COVID-19 disaster relief lending, please go here. For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY:1-800-877-8339) or e-mail disastercustomerservice@sba.gov

Michigan Economic Development Corporation resources for small businesses can be found here.

US Chamber of Commerce: Coronavirus Emergency Loans Guide and Checklist for Small Businesses and Nonprofits and live Q&A on Friday, April 3, at 2 p.m. ET on Zoom More information and register here

Nonprofit Organizations

We are constantly working to help nonprofits to meet the needs of the community. Please fill out the survey on a regular basis so we can ensure needs are being met.

Michigan Nonprofit Association resources for nonprofits during COVID-19: https://www.mnaonline.org/covid-19-and-advocacy/covid-19

Independent Sector: CARES Act Summary for Nonprofits

Unemployment Benefits

The U.S. Department of Labor issued guidance for state unemploymnet insurance programs to extend benefits to individuals whose employment status is impacted by COVID-19. Use this tool to find the agency that manages unemployment insurance in your state and visit their website for more information about eligibility and how to apply for benefits. West Michigan Works! can be reached at:

Greenville office: 616-754-3611

Ionia office: 616-389-8525

Please note the website has been crashing frequently and to be expected, long wait times for the unemployment hotline. The website is being kept updated with several resources. www.westmiworks.org Here is a guide to claiming unemployment benefits in Michigan.

Employee and employer resources from the State of Michigan can be found here.

Seattle Times: FAQ on “Recovery Rebates” and Unemployment Insurance Changes

Mental Health and Crisis

The outbreak of coronovirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may be stressful for people and communities. Fear and anxiety about the disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. Visit this CDC page to learn more about things you can do to support yourself and your loved ones. If you need to talk to someone, these resources are confidential and available for free 24/7:

Child and Educational Resources

Click here to access your free trial of Noggin Cares.

MDHHS has created a Communicating with Children During the COVID-19 Outbreak toolkit.

MSU Extension has an entire page dedicated to remote learning and resources.

Special Education and COVID-19

Additional Resources

All media questions and requests should be directed to Terri Legg, Executive Director, at terri.legg@liveunitedm-i.org

Videos on the Food Trucks

DW Video has created Reaching Out to Help Community - People Stepping Up and Howard City and Sand Lake are Stepping Up to Help Families about the work being done in the communities during COVID-19.


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A time to give is now

By Brandon Shreur, The Daily News on May 5, 2020

For nearly everyone — not just in Montcalm and Ionia counties, but across the entire state, country and world — the past two months have been anything but normal in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
 
To recognize some of the medical professionals, grocery store clerks and other essential workers who have stepped-up during this time, United Way Montcalm-Ionia Counties is teaming up with nonprofit organizations across the country to celebrate #GivingTuesdayNow today. Read more...

Stanton-based churches partner with United Way and Feeding America for food distribution

By Brandon Shreur, The Daily News on May 4, 2020

STANTON — Standing in Central Montcalm High School’s parking lot on Thursday afternoon, Beth Bellows and a number of volunteers from Trinity Church and First Congregational Church in Stanton gathered to hand out box after box of donated food to local families.
 
“Obviously, with COVID-19 and the loss job jobs, there’s an inability to have food on the shelves at all the stores, at all times,” said Bellows, assistant to the lead pastor at Trinity Church. “We wanted to make sure people didn’t go hungry. We wanted to make sure they have the resources to continue providing for the families with the food they needed.” Read more...

United Way and DTE partner to raise funds for Feeding America food trucks

By Brandon Shreur, The Daily News on April 14, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues over the coming weeks following Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s extension of the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order, families and community members may need help.
 
“We’re just starting to really see the need, honestly,” United Way Montcalm-Ionia Counties Executive Director Terri Legg said. “Forty-nine percent of people between the two counties struggle to make enough for basic needs before COVID-19 hit. We know that, of that 49 percent, 43 percent of them don’t have a rainy day fund, so to speak.” Read more...

Increase in Mobile Food Bank Events Provides Relief in Wake of COVID-19

By Cory Smith, The Daily News on March 20, 2020

GREENVILLE — As a lifelong firefighter and resident of Florida, Don Ruiter has pretty much seen it all.
“I’ve been through dozens of hurricanes, the 1998 wildfires, the Parkland school shooting — I’ve been through tons of crisis events,” he said. In moving to Michigan a year ago, and having since built a house west of Greenville, Ruiter knows what it takes to overcome tragedy and a feeling of the unknown. Read more...

United Way CEO Chats with Jacksepticye