- Shortness of Breath
Call the McFarland nurse line at 515-500-6711 Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. After hours call 211 (partnering with IDPH), or, if necessary, 911.
Multi-lingual Hotline - 1-877-558-2609
Local clinic information:
Public Health information:
TestIowa is an initiative in partnership with state leaders and private corporations. The goal is to dramatically increase the rate of COVID-19 testing so Iowans can have better access to testing and help stem the spread of COVID-19.
UWSC partner agencies provide critical support to Story County in the areas of health, education, and financial stability. Most are continuing to provide services to our neighbors. Please click the link above to view our list of partner agencies and their websites.
Resources in Story County:
Many Story County child care programs are now reopening after extended closures due to COVID-19. If you are still in need of child care, United Way of Story County is working collaboratively to figure out childcare for emergency personnel (medical staff, first responders, and other essential staff). If you need care but are not considered an "essential" service, please check in with Iowa Child Care Resource and Referral below. They also provide Child Care Guidance in Response to COVID-19 which provides child care vacancies and closings, information on child care assistance payments, and much more.
Child Care Assistance application- Child Care Assistance (CCA) is available to the children of income-eligible parents. Click the link to apply.
Call the CCR&R hotline at 855-244-5301 for help finding a child care provider.
The Ames Public Library will begin a phased reopening starting July 1. Please click the link above for guidelines.
Our local Campaign for Grade Level Reading, Story County Reads, will be posting tons of educational opportunities for families. Check back soon for ideas to keep your kids minds going!
Many of our partner agencies are providing their summer programming in new and different ways. Click their websites below for more information.
Public WiFi is available outside of two locations in Ames- Ames Public Library and Furman Aquatic Center. Click here for details.
School Supply Assistance
Nevada schools- Contact Jodi Heeren at email@example.com. Please indicate how many in your family need supplies and which grades they are in. More details to come.
Ames schools- A "Drive and Go" event will be held on August 19th at the Ames Middle School from 12-4pm. There is no registration this year, it will be first come first serve and supplies will be limited. If you have questions or concerns, including transportation concerns, please contact Amber Franzeen at firstname.lastname@example.org or Candice Collins at email@example.com.
Iowa Workforce Development - temporary job openings
Iowa Workforce Development has partnered with Coursera to offer free online learning opportunities to Iowans during the pandemic. Coursera is an online learning platform with over 4,300 courses available from a variety of academic institutions and organizations worldwide. The online classes and certificate programs are available to Iowans at no cost if they register for and enroll in any of the courses by Sept. 20, 2020, and complete their courses by Dec. 31, 2020.
On May 27, the temporary emergency moratorium on evictions expired in Iowa. (Note: Individuals living in a federal "covered property" still have protections until July 25 under the federal CARES Act.) In person hearings on civil matters (including evictions) have been continued by the Iowa Supreme Court until at least July 13, 2020 or are to be held by video or teleconference at the discretion of the judge hearing the case. If you are facing eviction, please contact:
- Legal Aid Society of Story County, housed in Nevada (eviction and related landlord-tenant cases are being treated as "crisis" cases and will receive prompt assistance) 515-382-2471
- Iowa Legal Aid Hotline (free legal advice, Monday through Friday, 9am-4pm) 1-800-332-0419
- Financial assistance providers listed below for help with rent payments.
- See if you are eligible for the state of Iowa's Eviction and Foreclosure Program:
Governor Kim Reynolds launched a new program that will provide short-term relief to income-eligible renters and homeowners who are at risk of eviction or foreclosure due to a documented COVID-19 related loss of income. The COVID-19 Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program is administered by the Iowa Finance Authority. To apply and for more information on eligibility, visit: https://www.iowafinance.com/covid-19-iowa-eviction-and-foreclosure-prevention-program/
Alliant Energy is temporarily suspending disconnections and waiving late fees. If you or someone you know if having difficulty paying utility bills, visit alliantenergy.com/myaccount to set up a payment plan based on your abilities.
Emergency Financial Assistance
*Please note - several of our Story County emergency financial assistance providers are experiencing changes to their delivery.
Stimulus Payment Deadline for Non-Filers is October 15
The IRS reminds Americans who don't earn enough to have a tax filing requirement to sign up online with the IRS to request an Economic Impact Payment. If you're a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or "qualifying resident alien", you may be eligible for an Economic Impact Payment. Even if you don't normally file taxes or are experiencing homelessness, you may still qualify for a payment. You may also get an additional $500 for each qualifying child. To get this $1,200 payment, sign up at IRS.gov by October 15, 2020. No income is required and registering won't result in you owing taxes.For eligibility requirements, required documents, and more information, visit https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here (website available in multiple languages).
Rent and utility assistance when funds are available. Must be an Ames resident. Documents required: Rental assistance needs photo ID, lease/rental agreement with landlord's information. Utility assistance needs a utility bill. Call (515) 232-2765 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
515-296-1449 / email@example.com - Rent/utility/gas/food vouchers available. Good Neighbor has made a decision to move applications for assistance from in person to phone and email applications at this time. They prefer people call or email on Mondays and Thursdays, but will be monitoring email and taking calls any time they can. Food vouchers are being distributed for emergency use only at this time. Again, a phone or email application informs their decisions and pick up of the vouchers will be from a medically safe and secure location.\
NEW! MICA CARES Direct Assistance Program:
515-956-3333 - This program is accepting applications over the phone for rent, mortgage, utility, and food assistance (direct payments to providers). No SSN necessary.
Utility assistance - one time payment. LiHEAP funds are still available. The LiHEAP program regularly runs until the end of April but the state is extending the moratorium protection from April 1 to May 31. Families that apply and are approved will be protected from disconnection until May 1. Assistance is by phone only, please call 515-956-3333.
St. Patrick's "Good Samaritan" Financial Assistance Program (Nevada, IA)
515-382-2974 - Rent/utility/gas assistance. This program is for residents of eastern Story County: Must live on east side of interstate (Cambridge, Collins, Colo, Fernald, Maxwell, McCallsburg, Nevada, Roland, Zearing). Provides rent and utility assistance every 6 months (up to $200). Provides gas assistance for work or medical appointments only every 3 months. Students are not eligible for the program. Assistance is currently by phone only, please call! Denials are not currently required; landlord and utility company information is still required for those requesting rent or utility assistance; driver's license is required for those requesting gas assistance.
515-663-2930 / firstname.lastname@example.org - Rent/utility assistance. All County services will remain operational and available to the public either online or via phone or email. The Community Services office at 126 South Kellogg Ste 001 in Ames is closed to the public as of noon on March 18.
515-233-3567 / cari.mcpartland@USC.salvationarmy.org - Rent/utility/other emergency assistance. All assistance is by appointment only. Starting Monday, March 30 clients can call to schedule phone interviews for homelessness prevention dollars.
515-292-3810 / email@example.com - Rent/utility assistance. Their office will be open Monday-Friday, 9:30-12pm. They will try to continue to serve "Love Your Neighbor" clients by phone, email, or mail. If a client does not have internet access to email documents, they have agreed to accept verbal documentation rather than hard copy documentation. Other than that, they are business as "unusual". Clients seeking rental assistance cannot be evicted by order of the Governor, but their overdue rent and any fees will continue to accumulate during the duration of the order.
In addition to the usual providers of emergency basic services, the following organizations are offering financial support during this time:
Funding available to help pay the bills (rent, utilities, medical) for those experiencing income or job loss due to COVID-19. The payee needs to be able to accept a credit card via phone or the internet. Contact Pr. Eileen Gebbie at either firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-232-9323.
Financial Help for Immigrants
Please see below under International and Immigrant Help for resources and a link to apply for the COVID-19 Emergency Fund for Immigrants.
The HealthWell Foundation is providing up to $250 assistance to families, via phone applications only, with delivered food, medication, diagnostics, transportation, and telehealth as a result of COVID-19 risk or incidence. If you or anyone you know needs financial assistance for any of these supports, please call (800) 675-8416 or use the link above for more information.
If you were enrolled at Iowa State University for Spring 2020 or will be enrolled for Summer 2020, and have experienced a financial hardship due to campus disruptions related to COVID-19, you are eligible to apply for emergency funds. Further information and an application form are available here.
America Saves - resources on taxes, student loans, SNAP benefits, and more
The key is to make sure to communicate with those expecting a payment before the payments are due in order to show good faith but also to find out what your options are for partial or delayed payments. In all cases do not make promises you can not keep. Document the agreements you have reached so that you don’t have to count on your memory at a later date. Finally, follow through on your promises.
Check the other resources on this page to see if there is a program that will either help with a critical bill or free up money so you can pay the critical bill such as utilizing a food pantry.
Family finance program specialists are providing free, one-on-one financial conversations. Financial educators are available to talk about options for revising a budget, prioritizing bills, paying down debt and connecting Iowans with community resources to stretch reduced incomes. Iowans can connect with a family finance specialist by phone or email. The conversations are free and confidential. Click the link above for more info.
To provide relief to student loan borrowers during the COVID-19 national emergency, federal student loan borrowers are automatically being placed in an administrative forbearance, which allows you to temporarily stop making your monthly loan payment. This suspension of payments will last until Sept. 30, 2020, but you can still make payments if you choose. Click the link above to learn more.
Story County is the most food insecure county in all of Iowa. With the COVID-19 pandemic, we know our local food insecurity will grow. In the link above you can find information on a variety of food resources, including food pantries county-wide (and their changes during this time), school district food resources during COVID-19, and other food resources available to you. If you have any resources to add, updates, or questions, please contact Anneke Mundel, Community Impact Director at UWSC.
The Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) submitted another federal waiver to Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) to ensure continued expanded access to food. This federal waiver allows for continued increased benefits for current and newly eligible applicants. DHS will increase June Food Assistance benefits to the maximum allowable amount per household. If a household is not already receiving the maximum amount for June, those additional benefits will be added to their EBT card with their normal monthly benefits.
The Department of Human Services has increased the April and May SNAP benefits to the maximum allowable amount for current and newly eligible individuals, suspended the food assistance work requirements, and added new online options at Amazon and Walmart for individuals using their Food Assistance EBT card to purchase food. Read more here.
Struggling to provide healthy food for your young child during the COVID-19 crisis? The WIC Program aims to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 who are at nutrition risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, information on healthy eating, and referrals to health care. Most WIC programs are enrolling people by phone or online. Use the zip code locator linked above to find a phone number to call.
The Senior Supplemental Food Program serves persons 60 years of age or older. This does not include disabled people under 60 years of age. A person must reside within the geographical boundaries of Polk, Warren, Jasper, Dallas, Story and Boone Counties. A person must meet the following income eligibility guidelines established by the USDA. Foods received monthly: shelf stable milk, non-fat dry milk, rice or pasta, ready-to-eat cereal, farina, or oatmeal, peanut butter or dry beans, canned meat or fish, bottled juices, canned fruites, canned vegetables, and cheese. Click here for the Story County delivery schedule.
Multi-lingual Hotline - 1-877-558-2609
This list of resources for immigrants and other internationals provides resources (financial, ELL classes, COVID-19 information) in Story County, Iowa, and beyond. If you know of resources that should be included, please email Anneke Mundel. Please also be sure to check above under the Financial Assistance resources listed above.
Esta lista incluye recursos para inmigrantes y otras personas internacionales en el condado de Story, en Iowa, y en los alrededores. Si usted conoce recursos que debemos incluir o si tiene preguntas, favor de mandar un email a Anneke Mundel. ¡Se habla español!
Community partners have come together to set up a COVID-19 emergency fund specifically for Immigrants. Funding will provide emergency assistance for rent, utilities, gas, and other necessities like prescriptions. Please note, rent dollars will be provided directly to the landlord and utility payments will be provided directly to the utility company.
To be eligible, you must: Live in Story County, be an immigrant, have an immediate expense that is past-due, due now, or due within the next 7 days.
Paper applications in both spanish and english are available at St. Cecilia's Narthex or Rosita's Mexican Store. You can also apply online with the link above.
Socios de la comunidad se han juntado para establecer un Fondo de Emergencia de COVID-19 para Inmigrantes. Financiamiento provee ayuda de emergencia para alquilar, servicios públicos, gasolina, y otras necesidades (recetas médicas, etc). Pago de alquilar estará mandodo directamente al dueño del domicilio y pagos de servicios públicos estarán mandados directamente a las compañias de servicios.
Para calificar para ayuda, usted debe: Vivir en el Condado de Story, ser inmigrante, tener gastos inmediatos (alquilar, sevicios públicos, gasolina, u otras necesidades básicas) los cuales están vencidos, vencen ahora, o vencen en los próximos 7 días.
Se puede encontrar solicitudes en papel en español e inglés en Narthex de St. Cecelia o en la Tienda Mexicana Rosita's. O, haga su solicitud online en https://forms.gle/s3zG32cyx5bLs6Mf9.
Keep America Connected Pledge
AT&T, CenturyLink, Mediacom, Sprint, T-Mobile, TracFone, Windstream, and more have each signed on to the FCC pledge to not terminate internet service due to inability to pay caused by the Coronavirus, to waive late fees, and to open up their WiFi hotspots if they have any. Click here for a full list of providers.
T-Mobile: Suspending mobile data caps for 60 days, providing an extra 20GB of data for hotspot tethering, providing Lifeline customers with 5GB additional data, and providing additional data allowance to educational institutions.
Verizon: Tripling data limits for its Verizon Innovative Learning schools, donating $10 million to educational nonprofits, waiving late fees for residential and small business customers.
Mediacom offers a simple, affordable way to help students get quality home internet if one child in the household qualifies for free or reduced-price school lunch. Mediacom is currently offering free installation and free connections for two months, as well as temporarily removing data caps, for qualifying families who sign up by May 15. If plans are continued into the summer, it will go back to $10/month plus tax. You can find more information about this program at https://mediacomc2c.com/.
Public WiFi is available at two locations in Ames, Furman Aquatic Center and the Ames Public Library, for students and others who need an Internet connection in the community. Click above for more details.
Free Iowa Hotline - 1-800-332-0419
Iowa Legal Aid, in partnership with the Iowa State Bar Association and Polk County Bar Association's Volunteer Lawyers Project, has set up a free hotline for Iowans who may be facing legal issues during the COVID-19 outbreak, including eviction, denial of unemployment benefits, employment issues, identity theft and more. To reach the hotline, call 1-800-332-0419 and leave a message. A representative will call you back to obtain more information and get you connected with an attorney. View information from Iowa Legal Aid here.
Starting May 11, Legal Aid will provide virtual appointments for intakes from their waitlist. Rent/eviction cases will be given priority as these cases are on the rise due to the economic impact of COVID-19. If you or someone you know needs legal assistance regarding their rent payment, contact Legal Aid at (515) 382-2471.
DHS is waiving all co-pays, premiums, and contributions for Iowa Health and Wellness Plan (IHAWP), Medicaid for Employed People with Disabilities (MEPD), Healthy and Well Kids in Iowa (Hawki), and Dental Wellness Plan (DWP) members until the emergency declaration is lifted.
When calling in your prescriptions, ask that the FamilyWize discount be applied by providing them the following information:
Card ID: FW100
Group ID: FW100
Registration is not required for this program so anyone can use it!
Statewide Crisis Line 24 hour services
Toll-free Crisis Line phone number: 855-581-8111
Live, online chat counseling, available at: yourlifeiowa.org
Text support available by texting to: 855-895-8398
Iowa DHS launches COVID Recovery Iowa, free virtual counseling sessions for Iowans
The Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) is offering free counseling to any Iowan who has been affected, in any way, by the COVID-19 public health emergency through COVID Recovery Iowa.
Counseling will take place via virtual sessions, chat or phone call.
Iowans can access services through the following options:
- Call 800-447-1985 to connect with a counselor specializing in rural issues and agriculture 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Call the Iowa Warm Line, 844-775-9276, to connect with a peer counselor or request to get in touch with a COVID Recovery Iowa counselor.
- Visit www.COVIDrecoveryiowa.org and complete a contact form and a counselor will get back to you.
United Way staff will update this as often as possible. If you have an update from your agency, please email Anneke Mundel.
24/7 Help Lines:
Sexual Abuse Helpline: 1-800-203-3488
Domestic Abuse Helpline: 1-855-983-4641
Emergency Housing Helpline: 1-855-696-2980
The Bridge Home (formerly ERP)
The shelter is no longer doing walk in applications for rent or utility assistance. Please call 515-232-8075 to request help.
All adolescent residential addiction treatment facilities in Ames are open and operating. If you or a loved one is in need of treatment, please contact Mark at 515-233-4930.
Need help getting supplies to your home?
For individuals 60+, Heartland Senior Services is offering assistance with medication and grocery pick-up/delivery. To access this assistance, please call 515-233-2906.
For individuals under 60 who need assistance, please post in this Facebook group: Ames Area Community Support for COVID-19 or call United Way of Story County at 515-268-5142 to get connected with volunteers from local service clubs who are willing/ready to assist you.
CVS is offering FREE delivery of prescriptions. Call 515-292-2990.
Hy-Vee Clinic pharmacy is offering FREE delivery of prescriptions in Ames for those who can't get out due to health concerns. Call 515-233-7315.
NuCara is offering FREE delivery of prescriptions through the end of May. Call your location to set up delivery.
Walgreens is offering FREE delivery of all prescriptions. Call 515-232-8284.
Iowa Workforce Development announced two new unemployment benefit programs available to Iowans--Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) and State Extended Benefits. The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation provides an additional 13 weeks of federally funded benefits to Iowans who have exhausted their 26 weeks of regular state unemployment benefits. After their allotted weeks of regular state unemployment and the 13 weeks of PEUC are exhausted, unemployed workers will be eligible for State Extended Benefits. For more information, visit IWD's website and press release.
Want to help without leaving your house? Donate to our Response and Relief Fund. Select non-specified fund for general funding or LIVE UNITED Food Drive for pantry specific help.