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Your health and safety is HOW’s top priority in the face of the coronavirus (COVID-19). We are paying close attention to the developing conditions and adjusting the way we work to reduce risk while continuing to meet your needs.  

Please note, our offices at 1607 W. Howard St. and 400 W 76th Street (Ste. 360) will be officially closed until further notice. Unless you have a confirmed appointment, please do not come to our offices, as the majority of HOW staff will be working remotely.  

Tenants, please contact your Housing Specialist with any questions regarding building maintenance, additional protocols and/or safety measures.



Check here for updated information regarding available services and resources. 

Childcare Resources
  • This search is for emergency childcare based on zip code, county, child's age, special needs, language, and other criteria. 

  • Note: these services are only for those deemed essential workers, defined here.  

  • Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies hotline: (888) 228-1146 

  •  A dedicated help line to connect essential worker families to emergency child-care.  

  • Available from 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM Monday through Friday to answer calls, but callers can leave a message 24 hours a day. 

  • For residents in Cook County, Illinois Action for Children (IAFC) has launched a temporary text messaging service to answer Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) questions during IAFC's office closure.  

  • Text: 312-736-7390 Monday through Friday between 8:30 AM-5:00 PM.  

  • Priority will be given to first responders, health care workers, and essential workers to help them find and pay for childcare. 

Child Educational Resources

Food and Supplies
  • Greater Chicago Food Depository provides a page with many helpful resources including an interactive map view of food pantries, soup kitchens and mobile food distribution, as well as a link to CPS website for more information on school meals. 

  • Their Benefits Outreach team helps people in Cook County with SNAP (food stamps), Medicaid, and other public benefits programs. 

  • For seniors, for Home-Delivered Meals,  

  • Email  

  • Call 312-744-4016, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday (Press 0 or remain on the line to speak to a senior service specialist) 

  • Call 311 

  • South Side weekly has a South Side community resource list in English and Spanish

  • Includes resources for kids, food, free and income-based clinics, pharmacies that deliver, and much more 

  • Some places have specific senior shopping hours 

Additional Food Resources:

  • CPS - All schools will provide meals to all students in need, Chicago Food Bank Beyond HungerLakeview PantryIrving Park Community Food PantrySoup Kitchen at KINS

  • WIC Resources

Mental Health Resources
  • CDC - managing stress and anxiety  

  • Chicago specific mental health resource

  • Illinois' Call4Calm: Illinois residents wanting to speak to a mental health care professional can text the word “TALK” or "HABLAR"  to 552020.

    • ​Residents can also text keywords like “unemployment,” “food,” or “shelter,” to seek help and guidance on other critical issues.

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness of Chicago has the following free mental health resources available to all Chicago residents: 

  • Connect to a NAMI Chicago Helpline mental health counselor by calling 311 or directly at 833-626-4244 

  • Connect to Bright Star Community Outreach's trauma counseling helpline at 833-TURN-123 

  • Connect to free teletherapy services at Chicago Department of Public Health Mental Health Centers by calling 312-747-1020

  • For after-hours support, contact Crisis Text Line which serves anyone, in any type of crisis, 24-hours a day. Instructions: Text HELLO to: 741741 to access a trained crisis counselor. 

    • Tips on Managing Anxiety about COVID-19 

    • Mental Health and Coping During COVID-19 

    • Guidance for Parents in Talking to Children about COVID-19 

Additional Resources
  • Senior Response Package

  • How to make a face mask at home

  • WIC Resources

  • SNAP Benefits: Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) has temporarily suspended work requirements for SNAP benefits starting April 1st. Learn more here​​

  • Government phone recipients should see an increase to data and minutes

    • Safelink: Unlimited minutes

      • 5 GB of Free Date--in addition to current allotment (Through 4.28.2020; Applied Automatically) 

    • Assurance: Unlimited Minutes

      • 6 GB of Free Data--in addtion to current allotment (Applied automatically one time only through 5.20.2020)

    • Access: Unlimited Minuted

      • Extra Data (Unspecified Amount

        • (Applied Automatically through 6.21.2020)

  • COVID-19 Information

    • Illinois Department of Public Health

    • Center for Disease Control and Prevention

    • City of Chicago

Step 1: 

Contact Your Case Manager

Step 2:

Enact Preventative Measures and Comply with State Orders

Step 3:

Obtain necessary medications & supplies

Try to obtain a 30-90 day supply of essential medicines and refill any prescriptions you have.

  • Many prescriptions services and healthcare providers are offering free early refills on prescriptions and free delivery.

​If possible, have extras of essential household items (e.g. diapers, laundry detergent, etc.) and food staples on hand.

Step 4: Develop Contingency Plans 

With CPS closed, many people are struggling to find child care for their children.

  • HOW's Youth Team stands ready to help families with resources and ways to ensure their children stay on track academically. Email the Youth team by clicking here or call 773-609-0337.

  • Have a support system in place for elderly family members.

We are asking that all HOW clients take the following steps below:

Stay connected to your Case Manager. Your Case Manager can help you make plans and access resources.  Be sure to be in frequent contact by email or phone.  

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