Resources for Families Impacted by COVID-19

We understand that this is an incredibly challenging time for Valley families. This page contains information for families across our region struggling with income loss related to stay-at-home policies, getting access to healthy food or a reliable internet connection, paying utility billsrent or mortgage, or experiencing anxiety or loneliness while in self-isolation or quarantine.

We will continually update this page as new resources become available.

We encourage families to stay up to date with reliable information from the California Department of Public Health website, which issues daily updates on COVID-19 in English and Spanish

Additionally, Valley Children's has set up a COVID-19 hotline, available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to help answer any questions you may have.

COVID-19 Hotline:
Toll free number: 888-286-9336
Local number: 559-353-3333

 


 

Help with Income Loss

Those experiencing loss of income due to COVID-19 may qualify for some benefits in California (learn more here). 

  • Unemployment Benefits

    • You may be eligible for unemployment if:
      • If an employer has either reduced your work hours or shut down due to COVID-19.
      • If you have to miss work to care for you children due to school closures, and you do not have alternative care or remote work options.
    • Click here for more information about filing an unemployment claim.
  • Paid Family Leave Benefits
    • You may be eligible for paid family leave if you have to miss work to care for someone who is ill or quarantined due to COVID-19. Click here for more information about filing a paid family leave claim.
  • Employers Experiencing a Loss of Business
    • Employers who are experiencing loss of business may also qualify for some benefits through California’s Work Sharing program. Click here to learn more about the program.
    • Small businesses can apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan from the U.S Small Business Administration at: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/

 

 

Food Assistance

If you have lost income and/or employment due to COVID-19, or are experiencing food insecurities in general, you may qualify for the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, also known as CalFresh. Please visit the online application tool to get started.

Various school districts throughout the Valley are providing parents with free breakfast/lunch pickups for children:

  • Central Unified School District
    • Free grab-and go breakfast and lunch will be available to anyone ages 1 to 18. Children must be present to receive a meal. Services run between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Click here for more information.
  • Clovis Unified School District
    • Free breakfast and lunch will be available to anyone age 18 and under. Adults must be accompanied by their children. Services run between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. Click here for more information.
  • Fresno Unified School District
    • Free grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches for any students and their families. Services start from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Click here to learn more or contact the Fresno Unified COVID-19 call center at (559) 457-3395 during normal business hours.
  • Merced Union High School District
    • Free breakfast and lunch for kids and teens (18 and under) through April 9. Child must be present. Services run between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. for breakfast and 12:00 p.m. and 1 p.m. for lunch, Monday through Friday. Click here for more information or call 209-325-2210.
  • Sanger Unified School District
    • Free grab-and-go breakfast and lunch will be available to anyone 18 or under. Services run between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. through April 3rd.


Food assistance from your local food bank

Local Food Banks

Central California Food Bank                   Click here for a food distribution map.

Madera County Food Bank                      Click here for food distribution information.

Merced County Food Bank                      Click here for food distrubtion information.

FoodLink Tulare County                           Click here for food distribution information.

San Luis Obispo Food Bank                    Click here for food distribution information.

Food Bank Santa Barbara County          Click here for food distribution information.

Second Harvest Food Bank                     Click here for food distribution information.

Stockton Food Bank                                  Click here for distribution information.

 

Other local food assistance resources

  • The Boys and Girls Club of Fresno County will be providing grab-and-go meals for club members. Members can contact their local club for distribution times.
  • Catholic Charities of Fresno will continue providing meals, diapers and other essential supplies for those in need. Visit 149 N. Fulton St. from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., call 559-237-0851 or visit their website.
  • St. James Episcopal Cathedral Church in Fresno has a food bank every Wednesday at 2:30-4:30 pm at 4147 East Dakota Avenue Fresno, CA 93726. Click here to visit their website.
  • For seniors who have participated in the congregate nutrition program in the past month, the Fresno-Madera Agency on Aging is enrolling them in emergency home meal delivery. Click here to visit their website.
  • Kern County's Aging Adult Services has provided nutrition resources for seniors in Kern County. Click here to visit their website.

How to Get Food Deliveries

If you cannot leave home or lack transportation, there are some food delivery options:

  • Bitwise Industries has offered to provide free grocery delivery for elderly or sick people in Fresno, Madera, and Tulare counties. Send the recipient, address, and shopping list to groceries@bitwiseindustries.com or call 559-460-7809.
  • Khalsa Aid International is offering grocery and meal delivery for seniors, immunocompromised people, and lower-income families in Central California. For more support, visit www.instagram.com/khalsaaidusa and send a private message explaining what is needed.

 

 

Assistance on Utility Bills

Your city’s public works/utilities department may offer special supports if you are experiencing financial stress as a result of COVID-19.

PG&E has instituted a voluntary moratorium on service disconnections due to non-payment, effective immediately and continuing until further notice. Please visit the PG&E COVID-19 resource and FAQ page for more information regarding payment arrangements and additional supportive needs.

Southern California Edison and Southern California Gas have information on their websites about resources for these utilities for families in the South Valley.

For Fresno residents, the city has issued a 30-day moratorium as of March 16 on shutting off water or garbage services in case of non-payment due to COVID-19 impacts.

For Clovis residents, the city has suspended water shut-offs in case of nonpayment until further notice.

 

 

Late on Rent or Mortgage

Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an executive order 3/17/20 that allows local jurisdictions to halt evictions for renters and homeowners, as well as requests banks and financial institutions to stop foreclosures, through May 31. This does not prevent eviction or foreclosure.

For Fresno renters, the City Council established a month-long moratorium on evictions on March 19. Renters must formally notify their landlord if the COVID-19 crisis has impacted their ability to pay rent. Landlords would then be required to allow at least six months for tenants to catch up on their rent. Read more from the Fresno Bee here.

If you live in public housing, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced a national eviction moratorium, for tenants who cannot pay rent due to coronavirus impacts. For homeowners with a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) backed mortgage, HUD announced that it is suspending all foreclosure and eviction actions for the next 60 days, through mid-May. Learn more at the HUD website.

 

 

Internet Services

There are several internet providers offering 60-day FREE services due to COVID-19, with services available to continue for as low as $9.95/month thereafter. In certain zip codes, free Chromebooks are also being offered. Contact the Fresno State Connect Initiative for more information and to be connected to a service provider in their zip code. This program is administered by the Fresno State Office of Community and Economic Development.

Contact the Fresno State Connect Initiative at 1-855-456-9995