Iron Range COVID-19 Resources

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Iron Range COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Resources

The COVID-19 pandemic affects every one of UWNEMN's Focus Areas: helping children succeed, empowering healthy lives, and stabilizing families and individuals. Our staff is hard at work to respond to this crisis in a thoughtful, responsible way. We are monitoring the situation closely and staying in regular contact with our schools, agencies, and other community partners to continue to be a resource to you.

Communication is key in times of uncertainty like this. Please check back to this page often as details are changing rapidly given the fluid nature of the situation. 

Scroll through for Iron Range updates, or jump to a section using the links below:
UWNEMN EVENT UPDATES
UWNEMN PROGRAM UPDATES
UWNEMN AGENCY UPDATES
COMMUNITY RESOURCES - FOOD
COMMUNITY RESOURCES - CHILDCARE
COMMUNITY RESOURCES - HEALTH
COMMUNITY RESOURCES - OTHER

 

UWNEMN EVENT UPDATES

  • Registration is open for UWNEMN's Big Buck Contest to support Imagination Library program. Hunters must register prior to the start of their season. Youth season begins October 21, and rifle season begins November 6! Click here to learn more.
  • UWNEMN's annual Bonspiel has been canceled for 2021. We look forward to seeing you on the ice in 2022!

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UWNEMN PROGRAM UPDATES

  • Buddy Backpacks packing has resumed for the school year. Click HERE to sign up!
  • Comforts of Home appointments are being offered as pick-up only. To make a referral for a client, please click HERE
  • Imagination Library will continue to mail books directly to children's homes on a monthly basis. If you have a child under 5 who is not enrolled in this program, this may be a good time to enroll them; click here to do soPlease keep in mind it takes 6-8 weeks for the first book to arrive.  Click here to watch UWMEMN board members read Imagination Library books for a virtual story time!
  • Meet Up & Chow Down free summer lunch program has concluded for the summer. Thank you to the volunteers who made it possible to provide free meals to children in Aurora, Chisholm, Hibbing, Mt. Iron, Nashwauk, and Virginia this summer!
  • Smiles United dental program is currently providing dental care to uninsured and underinsured patients OF ALL AGES out of UWNEMN's Chisholm building. Updated precautions will be in place for this program due to COVID-19. Click here to learn more. To make an appointment, call 1-866-543-6009.
  • United for Veterans has launched a new wellness program for local veterans, active duty, and members of the National Guard and Reserve. Upcoming free activities include fishing, golf, and kayaking. Sign up for the Veterans Wellness Passport here.

 

 

UWNEMN PARTNER AGENCY UPDATES

ALL AGENCIES are invited to apply for UWNEMN's 2022 Fund Distribution. Letters of Intent to apply are due October 15! Learn more here.

Region-wide:

  • Advocates for Family Peace remains available 24/7 by phone and in-person meetings. Itasca County: 218-326-0388 or 1-800-909-8336 | St. Louis County: 218-248-5512 or 1-800-909-8336.
  • American Red Cross Minnesota office in Duluth is now open from 10 am to 2 pm Monday-Thursday. Free smoke detector installation is still temporarily suspended with the exception of smoke detector installation through Red Cross partners. Those in crisis can reach Red Cross staff in our region by calling 218-722-0071. All disaster response services remain in place and available to those impacted by disasters such as home fires or flooding. To find a blood drive or to make an appointment to donate blood, call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or click here
  • Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA) offices are opening to the public on July 1, 2021. Many of the Senior Dining locations will be open to in-house dining. Meals on Wheels are available in specific areas. Head Start classrooms are closed until September. For more specific information on any of the services AEOA Senior and Nutrition Services offers, please call 1-800-662-5711 ext. 6899 or 218-735-6899.
  • Sexual Assault Program of Northern St. Louis County one-on-one, hospital, law enforcement, and legal advocacy is available 24/7 by phone. Call 218-749-4725 and press #6 to leave a voice mail or call/text 218-780-7227. 
  • Volunteers in Education (VinE) is in need of volunteer tutors for in-person and distance learning this fall. Call 218-404-5742 or email info@vine-mn.org for more information. 

City-specific:

  • ELY: Northwoods Partners classes and groups has resumed for those who are fully vaccinated. One on one programming and support groups are still on hiatus. If you are elderly and in need of grocery delivery, call 218-365-8019.
  • HIBBING: Salvation Army's soup kitchen is offering meals to go nightly from 4 pm to 4:45 pm. Its food shelf is operating BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.  Walk-ins will not be accepted, and those late to appointments will need to reschedule. Call 218-263-5096 to make an appointment.
  • HIBBING & VIRGINIA: Project Care Free Clinics are providing in-person care for non-COVID symptoms. Call your local clinic to set up an appointment. Prescriptions can also be refilled this way. Click here for more information. The Hibbing clinic is currently taking in-person appointments and walk-ins.
  • ITASCA COUNTY: Support Within Reach is available by phone and Zoom meetings (if advocate and client have access). If you are in need of a sexual assault exam, please go to the ER, and advocates will be present. The crisis line remains open: 1-866-747-5008.
  • VIRGINIA: Arrowhead Center has removed clothing from their outdoor pantry and filled the shelves with food.  
  • VIRGINIA: Salvation Army's supper club is drive through only from 1 pm to 3 pm and dine in or take out 3-4:30 pm. Bread table and food shelf are drive-through only. Appointments required for food shelf so staff can box up the food you need. Call 741-1889 to make an appointment.

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COMMUNITY RESOURCES - FOOD

 

Region-wide:

  • For a comprehensive list of food resources from the Rutabaga Project, including meals for children, food shelves, grocery assistance, and more, click here.
  • For a comprehensive list of restaurants on the Iron Range offering take-out and delivery, click here.
  • The Rutabaga Project continues to stock its Little Free pantries and are doing their best to keep them clean. The pantry is sanitized once per weekday, but items inside have not been sanitized. Please wash your hands after using the pantry, and use your best judgment when accessing the pantry. If you are sick, please send a friend or family member to the pantry in your place. For a map of pantry locations, click here.
  • USDA is warning of SNAP scams arising to steal confidential information like social security numbers, bank information, or PIN numbers in order to qualify for COVID-19-related assistance. If you are unsure if a request for information is legitimate, call 1-800-657-3698. For a list of current potential scams, click here. If you believe you are the victim of identity theft, contact your local police department; you may also file a complaint online with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by clicking here.

City-specific:

  • HIBBING: Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA) Grocery to Go services are available. Volunteers are needed for Meals on Wheels drivers and Grocery to Go shoppers. For more specific information, please call 1-800-662-5711 ext 6899 or 218-735-6899.
  • HIBBING: Salvation Army's food shelf is operating BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.  Walk-ins will not be accepted, and those late to appointments will need to reschedule. Call 218-263-5096 to make an appointment.
  • VIRGINIA: Aldi is reserving 8:30-9:30 am every Tuesday and Thursday for senior citizens and immunocompromised shoppers.
  • VIRGINIA: Arrowhead Center has removed clothing from their outdoor pantry and filled the shelves with food.
  • VIRGINIA: Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA) Grocery to Go services are available. For more specific information, please call 1-800-662-5711 ext 6899 or 218-735-6899.
  • VIRGINIA: Salvation Army's supper club is drive through only from 1 pm to 3 pm and dine in or take out 3-4:30 pm. Bread table and food shelf are drive-through only. Appointments required for food shelf so staff can box up the food you need. Call 741-1889 to make an appointment.

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COMMUNITY RESOURCES - CHILDCARE

  • For questions about childcare, contact the Child Care Aware parent line at 1-888-291-9811 to be directed to available licensed child care providers - or click here to search on a map.

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COMMUNITY RESOURCES - HEALTH

  • Click HERE for a map of vaccine locations and updates. 
  • Click here for a list of mental health resourced during this time of self isolation from Mental Health Minnesota.
  • Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA) Medical Loan Closet is available in the AEOA Virginia office. 
  • Essentia Health has resumed routine appointments. Masks are required. E-visits, telephone visits, and virtual visits available. COVID-19 screening available at no cost with an e-visit online. Call 1-833-494-0836 for more information. Visitors are now allowed under certain circumstances; click HERE for more information. 
  •  Project Care Free Clinics are providing in-person care for non-COVID symptoms. Call your local clinic to set up an appointment. Prescriptions can also be refilled this way. Click here for more information. The Hibbing clinic is currently taking in-person appointments and walk-ins.
  • St. Luke's is not canceling any existing appointments, procedures, or surgeries at this time. Visitors are allowed, with restrictions. No visitors are allowed to COVID-19 patients until patients are no longer in isolation. Rare exceptions may be made on an invitation-only basis. Click here for the full update. If you suspect you may have COVID-19, click here.
  • Range Mental Health is offering tele-health and face-to-face visits for outpatient therapy, peer support, targeted case management, and ARMHS. To make an appointment, call 218-749-2881 (Virginia), 218-263-9237 (Hibbing), or 218-780-6610 (Ely). The mobile crisis line is ALWAYS available for emergencies: 218-288-2100. Click here to learn more.

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COMMUNITY RESOURCES - OTHER

  • If you are having a hard time paying bills because you lost income as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic, UWNEMN can help. Click here for more information. 
  • If you owe back rent - OR if you are a landlord owed back rent - RentHelpMN may be able to help. Click here for more information.
  • Rate-regulated utilities have begun sending disconnection notices. Minnesota Public Utilities would like you to be aware of the following options: enter a payment plan with your utility, apply for the Energy Assistance Program, or call 1-800-657-3782 for help. 
  • For a comprehensive and timely list of updates on COVID-19 in our state, the state's response, and state resources, click here.
  • If you are unable to work, have had hours reduced, or have lost your job as a result of this pandemic, you can apply for unemployment benefitsClick here for more information.
  • The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is making Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) payments to people who are self-employed, independent contractors, and other eligible recipients who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits. Click here for more information.
  • IRRRB also has Taconite Area Business Relief Loan funds for local businesses adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here for details.
  • Legal Aid Service of Northeastern Minnesota offices are closed to the public. LASNEM is still open for intake by telephone and online and is still providing legal representation remotely and in court.  Agencies looking for any form of guidance regarding the frequently changing rules/policies should e-mail Heather Lindula at hlindula@lasnem.org.
  • Itasca County buildings remain open at this time. Click here for more information
  • St. Louis County buildings have reopened to the public. Anyone coming to a St. Louis County Courthouse for court matters should be aware these services follows a Minnesota Supreme Court order that limits some in-person services through June 13. For more information, click here.
  • Minnesota Power is resuming disconnections in August. If you have a past-due balance on your bill or are struggling to keep up, please call 1-800-228-4966.
  • Lake Country Power service center lobbies are closed, but lobby kiosks will remain open. Members will still be able to make payments at drop boxes on-site, kiosks, through SmartHub accounts, by phone, or through regular U.S. mail. If you experience an outage, please report it as usual, and Lake Country Power will dispatch linemen to make repairs as usual. Lake Country Power does not wish to disconnect service at this time. If you are facing financial hardship, contact 1-800-421-9959. 
  • Access to Virginia Public Utilities' lobby is restricted, and customers are encouraged to pay by phone (the utility will absorb fees paid by credit or debit card usage at this time), mail (be sure to include your remittance advice), or online. If you need more time to pay your bill, please contact the office by phone to work out an arrangement: 218-748-7540. If you have questions about steam conversion loans, contact lindaa@vpuc.com.

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Please remember, if you are ever in need of help, the 24-hour United Way 2-1-1 line is available to help you find local resources that best fit your needs. (Call 2-1-1 or visit www.211unitedway.org for more information.)

UWNEMN's mission is "to unite and focus our communities in creating measurable results to improve people's lives and strengthen our families." This unity and focus is needed now more than ever. Please practice patience, thoughtfulness, and preventive measures in the days and weeks to come to keep yourselves, your families, and your neighbors healthy and safe.