During times of adversity, the Kalamazoo community is well known to step-up and support one another. This current pandemic is no different. Organizations, businesses, and individuals are continuing to step up and provide additional support for those in need. As resources become available, we will update this web page. For now, check out what is available in our region.
- Immediate Support Services: If you or someone you know is in crisis or in need of food, shelter or additional care options dial 2-1-1.
- Jobs: Some employers have big, urgent hiring needs to keep up with new demands. If you or a loved one is in need of full or part-time opportunities, check out our Jobs Board on our First & 42 news site to see some hat have been made known to us.
- Free Meals for Kids: With all school buildings throughout Michigan closed, many parents who rely on food assistance programs are struggling to feed their kids. Kalamazoo County districts are providing support with organized free meal programs.
- Downtown Kalamazoo Gift Card Stimulus: We all must shop local now! In an effort to support Downtown Businesses and their employees, Kalamazoo Downtown Partnership will purchase $25 gifts cards, and mail them directly to your home (while supplies last). In addition, you will receive a $10 bonus for each $25 gift card purchased. Start gifting and shopping now.
- Meal Support for families: Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes is still providing food assistance through a drive-through system providing a four-day supply of pre-boxed meals.
- In Need of Crisis Relief Funds? The Kalamazoo Community Foundation has partnered with the United Way to activate community crisis funds. These funds will prioritize support for for direct service needs or gaps, critical internal operations and infrastructure, and additional volunteer capacity.
- Temporary Part-time or Remote Work for Students: Western Michigan University is compiling these resources to help students find part-time, remote, and work-from-home opportunities, and we update them as often as we find more information.
- Count on Consumers Energy to Keep Your Power On: Consumers Energy is committed to the health and safety of its co-workers, customers and communities. With emergency plans in place, it does not anticipate impact to its energy services and activated an existing internal team to prepare in the event COVID-19 becomes disruptive to Michiganders. In addition to the Consumers Energy Foundation announcing a $500,000 grant to be split between the Food Bank Council of Michigan and the Michigan Association of United Ways, Consumers Energy will suspend shutoffs for senior and low income customers through April 5, 2020.
- Save a Life. Give Blood. Although we can’t all turn around and become nurses over night, we can support the profession during this vulnerable period by donating blood. If you’re healthy and able, plan to donate at one of these upcoming drives. Spots fill up fast, schedule an appointment before you head out (especially now in light of Governor Whitmer’s new Shelter-in-Place order:
- Centreville United Methodist Church | Tuesday, March 24
- Blessed Sacramant Catholic Church | Wednesday, March 25
- Radisson Plaza Hotel & Suites | Monday, March 30
- Parchment United Methodist Church | Monday, April 6
- Renovation Church | Thursday, April 9
- American Red Cross | Thursday, April 9
- Western Michigan University Miller Auditorium | Wednesday, April 15
Essential Services Remaining Open at Kalamazoo County Health & Community Services Department
Kalamazoo County Government is following the State of Michigan’s recommendation in preventing the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to protect the overall public health of residents. Starting at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 16 all county facilities will be closed to the public until further notice except for departments conducting essential services such as the Health & Community Services Department (HCS). It is important that basic public health needs are met, even during this pandemic, to protect the health of all residents in Kalamazoo County.
Essential Services Remaining Open at HCS
- Area Agency on Aging Region IIIA
- Clinic: limited STD testing; immunizations; there will be no TB Tests including QFTs, titers or travel immunizations
- Environmental Health: Land, water, and wastewater; food safety; laboratory
- WIC (by appointment only)
- Veterans Service Office (by appointment only)
HCS will adjust hours to be Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. No evening clinics will be held on Thursdays. If you currently have a community worker at HCS, they will be available by telephone and email.
Process for COVID-19 Testing
When a person visits their provider and are concerned about COVID-19, they may be asked a series of questions to screen them for possible testing. If needed and depending upon laboratory criteria, they may be asked to give a sample to be submitted for testing. The results of this test may take up to five days to be returned. This is a rapidly evolving process, and testing protocols and availability will likely change in the future. Laboratories are required to notify HCS of any positive results of a Kalamazoo County resident.
Explanation of Executive Order 2020-9
For questions within Kalamazoo County, facility owners may call HCS Environmental Health Division staff at 269-373-5210.
Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-9, which temporarily closes theaters, bars, and casinos, and limits restaurants to carry-out and delivery orders. Under Executive Order 2020-9, effective Monday, March 16 at 3:00pm, the following places of public accommodation will be closed; restaurants, cafes, coffee houses, bars, taverns, brewpubs, distilleries, clubs, movie theaters, indoor and outdoor performance venues, gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, exercise studios, spas, and casinos. This order does not restrict a place of business from offering food and beverage using delivery service, window service, walk-up service, drive-through service, or drive-up service. Restaurants may allow five (5) people inside at a time to pick up orders, so long as they stay six feet apart from each other. These restrictions do not apply to the following locations: office buildings, grocery stores, markets, food pantries, pharmacies, drug stores, and providers of medical equipment and supplies, health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, juvenile justice facilities, warehouse and distribution centers, and industrial and manufacturing facilities. Order restrictions will remain in place until Monday, March 30 at 11:59 pm.