COVID-19 SUPPORT AND RESOURCES
Here are some information, resources and opportunities to offer assistance. In this uncertain time, let’s look for ways to help each other out, keep each other safe, and stay positive! North Park is awesome because you are a part of it.
CITY OF VICTORIA UPDATES AND INFORMATION
- Beginning on Monday, June 1, 2020 the City will be widening the sidewalk on the east side of Cook Street between Grant and Caledonia by installing balustrades in the road. You can see the plans for the sidewalk expansion here.
- Level 2 of the City’s COVID-19 Recovery Plan, which started June 13 includes the reopening of all outdoor recreation facilities. Royal Athletic Park will also be used for the operation of summer camps and outdoor adult health and wellness programs.
- Royal Athletic Park is also open to the public for community use on Monday, Tuesday, Thursdays and Fridays from 5-8pm, and Saturdays and Sundays from 1-8pm.
- The City of Victoria will be doing a weekly Facebook livestream on Fridays at 1pm
- Visit the City of Victoria’s Response to COVID-19 for service updates and information for residents.
- The City has created a Business Hub with links to information relevant to business owners.
- The City has implemented a number of initiatives to support local businesses and the community to reopen and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, including $575,000 in economic stimulus grants. The new initiatives will give restaurants and businesses the opportunity to expand their patios, and services on sidewalks, streets and neighbourhood squares and plazas. Parks will also be opened up for approved business use, such as outdoor yoga and fitness classes. Applications open up Monday, June 8. Read the guidelines and apply.
- THE LIST – Thank you to Community Micro Lending for putting together this amazing community document!
- Victoria, BC Community Portal – comprehensive, updated website of resources!
- Coalition to End Homelessness Service Provider Updates
- Women in Need – Resource Guide, updated daily – see Google Docs version here.
- Pandemic Community Resources (updated daily): Featuring food banks, free meals, Indigenous supports, youth supports, harm reduction, seniors support, transportation, and shelters.
- Wellness Together Canada: Mental Health and Substance Use Support– provides free online resources, tools, apps and connections to trained volunteers and qualified mental health professionals when needed.
- Street Survival in COVID Times – regularly updated document with information on financial supports, emergency shelter updates, housing referral programs, your legal rights, healthcare supports and changes to procedures, mobile outreach contact details, harm reduction, food and meal availability, bathroom, showers, and laundry.
FOOD SECURITY RESOURCES
- Request a free, weekly grocery hamper. The NPNA is putting together free, weekly grocery hampers made up of produce, bread, dairy, and eggs to be sorted and delivered by volunteers on Thursdays between 12-3pm. If you live in North Park, and would benefit from a hamper, please contact email@example.com.
- Thank you to Modo for the donation of drive time to help make these deliveries possible!
- The Red Cedar Café offers free, healthy and comforting meals for pick up or delivery. You can order online here for delivery or pick up (Sundays between 4-5:30pm). If you would like to receive these on a weekly basis you will need to complete a new order each time.
- The Shelbourne Community Kitchen offers self-select food hampers twice per monthly/household, and offers delivery! Contact them at 250-590-0980 or visit the website.
- Good Food Box Rapid Relief Application through the Fernwood NRG – Recipients will receive a Large Good Food Box every two weeks for the next 4 months free of charge. Recipients will pick-up their Good Food Box at the Fernwood Community Centre (1240 Gladstone Avenue, Victoria) on Tuesdays. Fill out an application here.
- Some of the Living Edge Neighbourhood Markets (free produce and groceries) are still on! See their Facebook or website for updates
- Central Baptist Church is hosting one of these markets at 833 Pandora Ave. (at Quadra St.), right at the edge of the North Park neighbourhood. This market is on Mondays 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
- Summary of Food Resources by region and type of service here. (Thank you to the Foodshare Network for creating this!)
- Access the Mustard Seed’s food bank – see the weekly hamper schedule here.
- My FED Farm – The Food Eco District is putting together FREE Food Garden Kits that they will be making available to those financially impacted by COVID-19. Apply here. Kits contain 2-5 round planters, soil, 3 starter plants, seeds, initial consult & info package, access to webseries and #MyFEDFarm chatroom.
- Request free seeds from Victoria Seed Share.
- University of Victoria Student Society Food Hamper Program – available to UVic students and their families, the hampers will contain food items, as well as some household items, safer-sex supplies and the option for menstrual products. Students are able to request a hamper every two weeks, and will need to pick it up at UVic. Complete the order form here.
RESOURCES FOR SENIORS
- Seniors: bc211 line has created a Safe Seniors, Strong Communities program. Either call 211 or visit this webpage for more info.
- Better at Home through Beacon Home Support Services – Friendly visiting, transportation, light housekeeping, minor home repairs, light yard work and grocery shopping (250-656-5537)
- Senior Community Outreach Project Partnered with Silver Threads – Outreach line will be monitored Tues.-Thurs. from 8:30am-4:00pm. Seniors can leave a message with their name, phone number and request of how we can help (250-889-4430)
- Sign up to receive free weekly meals delivered by Silver Threads. With funding from the Victoria Foundation, Silver Threads is delivering frozen meals prepared by the Island Health Authority Soup-er Meal Program, breads from Cobbs Bread Bakery and produce from the Food Share Network. Call 250-388-4268 to enrol yourself or a community member in need.
GENERAL SUPPORT AVAILABLE
- $10/month internet through Telus’ “Internet for Good” program. This program supports low-income Canadian families who have children under 18 years old, and are currently receiving the maximum Canada Child Benefit. Through this program, you can also purchase a desktop ($100) or laptop ($120).
- It’s not just Telus! See here for other providers, and an FAQ for navigating this resource.
- Post requests for assistance on the COVID-19 Coming Together Facebook Page. (Here is the North Park pod)
ACCESSING EI, CERB, AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT
- At a glance guide for accessing financial support – with links to application details.
- Federal Government Economic Response Plan (Employment Insurance, Canada Emergency Response Benefit)
- Provincial Government Economic Response Plan
- Specific info about Tax Relief for Province of BC here.
- Subscribe here for any Tax Benefit changes (Province of BC).
- Accessing EI in BC Fact Sheet
- Google document about accessing financial support.
- Contact TAPS for help applying for COVID-19 financial supports (including EI, and CERB)
- BC Hydro Relief Fund for Residential Customers
- One-time rent relief through Victoria Foundation Rapid Relief Fund. – The fund aims to provide one-time rental support up to a maximum of a $1000 per family. You must have exhausted all other resources, and demonstrate need related to COVID-19.
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org to complete a referral.
OPPORTUNITIES TO PROVIDE SUPPORT
- Apply for a Responsive-Neighbourhood Small Grant through the Victoria Foundation.The Responsive NSG grant stream provides grants of up to $500 for projects that connect people socially or involve sharing skills or talents with each other. Here are instructions on applying, and a few suggestions on projects!
- Apply for a Community Recovery & Resiliency grant (up to $5000) through the My Great Neighbourhood Grant stream. This new category is being created to further reinforce community actions that support residents due to the impacts to COVID-19, as well as assist in the recovery period.
- Sign up to complete tasks with Poverty Kills, or donate supplies on their regularly updated supply wish list.
- Visit Volunteer Victoria for a wide range of volunteer opportunities and resources for doing it safely!
- Check in on seniors in the community by phone. Schedule regular check ins with seniors, and ask if they are in need of groceries, prescriptions, or conversation.
- Drop off food, or make a financial donation to the Mustard Seed.
- Make a donation to Our Place.
- The Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness has created a webpage to collect information about supporting vulnerable populations, such as Victoria’s homeless and street involved community members.Volunteer to be an online tutor with the Victoria Literacy Connection.
- Take part in the Art Gallery of Victoria’s Listener-in-Residence program.Register with BC211 to offer your support to seniors in your community.
- Donate blood.
- Volunteer with TAPS to help folks apply for COVID-19 financial supports.
- Help the Food Eco District install a My FED Farm free garden to those financially impacted by COVID-19.
- Offer assistance, or respond to specific requests on the COVID-19 Coming Together Facebook Page. (Here is the North Park Pod.)
- Email email@example.com to add your name to the list of community members who can be called on to provide support.
PROVINCE OF BC: STATE OF EMERGENCY
- On March 17, 2020 the Province of BC declared a state of emergency. Again, following the Emergency Program Act: Division 2 – Declaration of State of Emergency here are the highlights of what the Province is able to do to respond to COVID-19:
- acquire/use any land or personal property considered necessary to respond to the effects of an emergency
- authorize or require any person to render assistance of a type that the person is qualified to provide to respond to the effects of an emergency or disaster;
- control or prohibit travel to or from any area of British Columbia
- provide for the restoration of essential facilities and the distribution of essential supplies and provide, maintain and coordinate emergency medical, welfare and other essential services in any part of British Columbia
- procure, fix prices for or ration food, clothing, fuel, equipment, medical supplies or other essential supplies and the use of any property, services, resources or equipment within any part of British Columbia for the duration of the state of emergency.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water,
- cough or sneeze into your elbow,
- avoid others who are unwell, and stay home when you are sick,
- avoid touching your face,
- Anyone who is concerned that they may have been exposed to, or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, should contact their health-care provider, or call 8-1-1.
- You can also call 1-888-COVID-19 or text 604-630-0300 for details, advice, and further information on the virus.
- BC COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool
- More information: BC Centre for Disease Control, Island Health.