COVID-19 Pandemic

>>>COVID-19 Pandemic
COVID-19 Pandemic2020-05-12T13:25:36-06:00

Resources and Supports for Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Children’s Defense Fund-Minnesota shares the concerns of Minnesota families as we face this crisis created by COVID-19. The federal and state government along with the non-profit and business communities are working together to bring additional resources and supports to children and families as quickly as possible. We recognize that not only is this a public health crisis but it is also a financial crisis for many familes as their job situations and security changes. Information is being updated daily as new resources and guidelines are made available.

To support CDF-MN’s efforts, please consider making a donation.

To help communicate this ever-evolving body of information to the public, CDF-MN will begin using the Bridge to Benefits website as a Bulletin Board to list resources and supports to help Minnesota families through the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, as families face employment changes and financial challenges brought on by this crisis, Bridge to Benefits can still be used to help assess eligibility for a wide array of public programs such as SNAP, Medical Assistance, Child Care Assistance, Energy Assistance, Early Learning Scholarships, School Meals and WIC. Screen for your family’s eligibility on the CDF-MN Bridge to Benefits website.

Additional Resources:

Policy Priorities

As the COVID-19 crisis evolves, Children’s Defense Fund-Minnesota believes that it is essential to center the values of equity and stakeholder input in responses designed to support the needs of every child and family in Minnesota.  CDF-MN is focused on the whole child with specific attention on children in low income households, children of color and American Indian children.  Over the past several weeks we have been listening to our community partners, child care providers and stakeholders, Freedom Schools partners, members of Voices and Choices for Children Coalition as well as other coalition partners regarding the needs of children, youth and families. Overall concerns about equity and technology, access to basic needs and on-going child care and education challenges have predominated these conversations.

CDF-MN presents the following policy suggestions rooted in community feedback as well as our own analysis.  Recommendations are given in response to the opportunity to use federal CARES Act funds flowing through CCDBG ($48 million), GEERS ($43 million), ESSER ($13 million), and additional reserves of federal funds (TANF, CCAP, etc.), as well as provide guidance to educational institutions receiving $126 million in pass-through funding and to advance policy changes that are cost neutral but provide continuity of support during the crisis. These suggestions are evolving as community conditions (both public health and economic) change and this is our best thinking today. Click here to view a summary of CDF-MN’s policy recommendations.

Out-of-School Time Learning

On our youth development side, we have been working with our CDF-MN Freedom School sites and schools to see how we can support distance learning and think through how we can provide enrichment support. We are aware that inequities in our community will make true distance learning difficult for many and we are working with partners to highlight the critical need for technology and free internet access.

2020 Census

We are adapting our Census mobilization efforts in light of the COVID-19 closures and cancellations to get the word out about the importance of ensuring that all babies and children are counted in Minnesota. We are sharing census information electronically and working with partners that are still open, such as childcare centers serving essential workers. Click HERE to view Census resources, including videos and social media graphics, for partners engaging in outreach to children and families.

To support CDF-MN’s efforts, please consider making a donation.

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