The coronavirus is affecting millions of people in unimaginable ways, including loss of work, lack of food supplies and loss of health benefits. So many of our partner organizations across L.A. County are working hard to support students and families affected by the pandemic, especially the most vulnerable. Here’s a snapshot of what our partners are doing on the ground.
- L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti launched a child care program for essential hospital employees, the L.A. Emergency Child Care Connection.
- The Los Angeles County Office for the Advancement of Early Care and Education is convening early childhood partners to find a childcare solution for parents who can’t take time off work.
- First 5 LA has made available a resource page for parents and early care and education providers to help them navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The Greater LA Education Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE), has launched the COVID-19 Education Response Fund. The fund will support the urgent needs of students, families and local school districts, such as securing basic needs, providing devices for distance learning, supporting the delivery of mental health services, and training teachers in online instruction.
- LAUSD has opened 60 Grab & Go Food Centers to ensure all students have access to healthy and nutritious foods while schools are closed.
- LAUSD also started a fundraising campaign - L.A. Students Most In Need - to support children in need of food, essential supplies and school devices to help them continue learning.
- LACOE is holding daily teleconferences with the County’s 80 superintendents to provide guidance and to assess common needs, especially on building the capacity of schools to move to online learning platforms and the ability of teachers to effectively engage in virtual instruction.
- Checkout the UCs, CSUs and California Community Colleges websites for continuous updates helpful for students and faculty.
- L.A. Community College District has partnered with Human-I-T to procure refurbished Chromebooks at a reduced cost for all L.A. College Promise Students with the support of the Mayor’s office. The District’s foundation has purchased an additional 30,000 refurbished Chromebooks at $90 each and is still fundraising for them. 95 percent of LACCD classes, including CTE instruction, will be transitioning online starting March 30. LACCD will also be distributing food vouchers to needy students courtesy of a second $150,000 donation from Ralphs/Kroger.
- The University of La Verne has made adjustments to their admission policies, including waiving all application fees and letters of recommendation, accepting unofficial transcripts, and maintaining their existing commitment to test-optional admission (no SAT is required). They are maintaining a list of resources for students and are engaged in active support for all students, including offering laptops and wifi hotspots available for check-out to those University of La Verne students who don’t have technology at home.
- Find a list of resources for the USC community. USC has made moves to mitigate any negative ramifications for students, as the institution has moved classes to optional pass/fail, extending the drop deadline for courses, and paying students under contract at the university. Faculty are being supported through online trainings, and community programs are being supported through continued service, such as delivering meals to youth.
- John Burton Advocates for Youth, in partnership with iFoster, is ensuring that foster youth, homeless youth and other vulnerable populations have access to technology, such as free laptops and internet, to continue with their online education. They also have a running list of available resources for K-12 and college students.
- Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Job Portal is now live, providing Angelenos opportunities to apply for work. He is also continuing to host daily press conferences at 5:15 pm to provide ongoing updates.
- Workforce Development Aging & Community Services (WDACS) has launched a $500,000 employer assistance grant fund to local businesses. Apply here starting Apr. 9!
- The City of Los Angeles has established a Small Business Emergency Microloan Program to provide 0 percent interest loans of $5-$20k for up to a year and has also set up a fund to support the City’s response to COVID-19.
- The Health Sector Collaborative is exploring ways to bolster the health care workforce to ensure sufficient staffing to respond to the pandemic.
- The L.A. Workforce Systems Collaborative will be discussing the economic impact of COVID-19 on various sectors, rapid re-employment strategies, and the impact on workforce development programs and services.
- Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce is providing small to mid-size businesses with resources on how to protect their employees and their bottom line.
- The LA Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) has assembled a resource page for businesses and workers who need financial assistance due to the coronavirus.
Community & Social Services
L.A. County is mobilizing agencies, nonprofits and volunteers to fight hunger through their new initiative: Free Food Resources for LA County Residents during COVID-19 Crisis and Ways to Help
- There is now an online food portal connecting those in need and those willing to help.
- Although all 86 county library branches are closed, residents will have access to the L.A. County Library’s digital resources. Residents can sign up here for a temporary digital card. Plus, due dates for checkout materials have been extended. Don’t worry about late fees!
- United Way of Greater Los Angeles launched the Pandemic Relief Fund to support the county’s unsheltered residents and low-income individuals, students and families at risk of homelessness due to hardships caused by the coronavirus.
- The Alliance for Children’s Rights, convener of the L.A. Opportunity Youth Collaborative, has compiled a list of resources to help foster youth and caregivers impacted by the pandemic.