This page is to share resources regarding how to manage the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic at the household level. If there is something we should have here, please email admin[@]HelpAroundTown.com
To understand what the coronavirus is, what you can and should do, including a recipe for hand sanitizer, see
this presentation by Dr. Michael Lin, MD-PhD at Stanford.
HELP PAYING ENERGY BILLS
Eversource on 4/29/20 announced "new, flexible options that may help meet your needs". "Even if you have never qualified before, if you have been laid off or had your hours reduced because of the pandemic, you may be eligible for financial assistance now. Many programs have added funding, extended application deadlines and relaxed eligibility requirements:
The Massachusetts Low-Income Home Energy and Assistance Program (LIHEAP) , or fuel assistance, can help pay a portion of your household energy bills. The deadline to apply has been extended to Friday, May 29, 2020.
Residential customers that do not qualify for LIHEAP can apply for financial assistance from the Good Neighbor Energy Fund through your local Salvation Army Assistance Center.
Small business customers may be eligible for state or federal aid through the Coronavirus Aid and Relief (CARES) Act, which just received additional funding.
If you need help paying your energy bill, the most important thing to do is reach out to us at 800-592-2000 to discuss your situation as soon as possible." Eversource email 4/29/20
Neighbor Brigade For residents of Acton, Bedford, Billerica, Concord, Lexington, Maynard, Natick, Needham, Sudbury and Wayland , Neighbor Brigade is an organization that matches people who need help due to illness or accident with neighbors volunteering to help with meals or rides to the doctor, etc. NeighborBrigade has been matching neighbors in times of crisis for 10 years. It is organized in town chapters. There are 27 chapters in MA and chapters in RI, NJ and WA.
For Lexington Residents CAAL (the Chinese American Association of Lexington) is undertaking efforts to organize a volunteer group to help those families impacted by Covid19.
CAAL has created a simple online form to help with this effort. The form is designed for both those who can volunteer as well as those in need of help to use. CAAL is volunteering to match and address all the needs.This is open to all Lexington residents, to either be a volunteer, or to seek help.
HelpAroundTown.com is designed to connect people who need help with neighbors available to help, within a mile of each other. When you sign up on HelpAroundTown.com as a volunteer or as a paid helper, you can look for paid or volunteer jobs within a mile of your house. You can also sign up for job alerts customized to your interests. Posting a job, whether it is paid or volunteer, is free. When you do a job on HelpAroundTown, you keep 100% of what you make.
To volunteer to help in Arlington, MA, go to the Arlington List's Facebook page
In Brookline, MA, you can volunteer to help or get help dealing with the virus through Mutual Aid Brookline
SMALL BUSINESSES & NON_PROFITS
Small Business Disaster Relief federal Loans (SBA) will offer low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to Massachusetts small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred. Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years, and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.
Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela . Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 18, 2020.
Hand-washing with soap and water for 20-30 seconds is the most effective method to break down the coronavirus. Soap and water "Kill" the coronavirus -- but viruses aren't alive. They're just a temporary gathering of molecules. Soap breaks down the COVID-19 gathering, which is flimsily held together by a layer of fat. Soap dissolves fat. For a really good explanation, see this Twitter thread by Palli Thordarson (Thanks to Toby at Seafood.com for sharing it)
CLEANING & DISINFECTING
The CDC recommends first cleaning, then disinfecting surfaces in your home. (If you disinfect before cleaning, germs might hide under dirt.) To disinfect the coronavirus, alcohol concentrations of 70% are effective. Higher concentrations of alcohol are not necessarily better disinfectants. It depends on what you're targeting.
Routinely and preventively clean and disinfect high touch surfaces like:
light switches, handles, doorknobs
counters, tabletops, desks, tables and bedside tables
toilets, faucets, sinks, bathroom fixtures,
phones, keyboards, tablets
CDC Environmental cleaning and disinfection recommendations
Home Care Guidance to prevent the spread of the virus
Or for a more entertaining version, see https://www.apartmenttherapy.com/cdc-coronavirus-cleaning-tips-36724399
Stressing out from anxiety overload? Here are some good suggestions from WBUR's Cognoscenti magazine
Kids: Play with your neighbors across the yard, but from a distance: * Simon Says
Red light / Green light
Play on zoom, FaceTime, Skype, WhatsApp with friends: - Charades - Dictionary
A list of Broadway plays and musicals you can watch from home
On March 17 at 4 pm EST, John Legend did a show on Instagram
Ben Platt and others from shuttered Broadway shows will be doing a Virtual Dance Party: Quarantunes starting March 17 at 6pm.
The Dropkick Murphy’s will use multiple platforms to stream their traditional St Patrick’s Day show starting at 7PM
Cellist Yo-Yo Ma has kicked off a campaign to share #SongsOfComfort on Twitter with performances including Bach’s Cello Suite No. 3 dedicated to healthcare workers.
The MET is broadcasting a different opera every day this week for free. It is a broadcast similar to the live performances they show at the Regal Cinema. You just need to download the app called 'Met Opera on Demand.' When you click on the free preview, it actually starts the entire broadcast, not just a preview. You do not need a subscription or even the "free trial"
The Vienna Opera is broadcasting the shows it would normally have been performing
MUSEUMS Being at home now, here's a list of 10 interesting museums with virtual online tours of their collections.
Pinacotejca di Brera - Milano https://pinacotecabrera.org/
Galleria degli Uffizi - Florence https://www.uffizi.it/mostre-virtuali
Vatican Museum - Rome http://www.museivaticani.va/content/museivaticani/it/collezioni/catalogo-online.html
Archeology Museum - Athens https://www.namuseum.gr/en/collections/
Prado - Madrid https://www.museodelprado.es/en/the-collection/art-works
Louvre - Paris https://www.louvre.fr/en/visites-en-ligne
British Museum - Londra https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection
Metropolitan Museum - New York https://artsandculture.google.com/explore
Hermitage - San Petersburg https://bit.ly/3cJHdnj
National Gallery of art - Washington https://www.nga.gov/index.html