This information has been collected through multiple community organizations. Compiled by the New Bedford HSPN & United Way of Greater New Bedford. Updated 2-1-21
Mass 211 24/7 non-emergency hotline for information on the COVID-19 outbreak – Dial 2-1-1
Text “COVIDMA” to 888-777 to receive COVID-19 text message alerts straight to your phone and stay up to date with the latest news + updates from the Commonwealth.
COVID Testing sites: https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-testing
Information on Vaccines: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/massachusetts-covid-19-vaccine-information
Dept. of Early Education and Care offers assistance if household income is below 50% of state median income. If a child is disabled or special needs, income must be below 85% of SMI. Call 211 for childcare assistance. https://www.mass.gov/guides/early-education-and-care-financial-assistance-for-families
Housing for DV survivors: emergency shelter hotline: 617-573-1106 https://www.mass.gov/doc/domestic-violence-brochure/download
GNB Women’s Center: 508-999-6636 – In person meetings will begin August 17th, by appointment only. Telehealth visits will continue.
Massachusetts Healthy Incentive Program (HIP) HIP reimburses you when use your SNAP benefits to buy healthy, local produce from participating HIP farm vendors. https://www.mass.gov/service-details/massachusetts-healthy-incentives-program-hip-basics
Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) P-EBT is a federal program. The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA), in collaboration with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), received approval to operate this program in response to the COVID-19 related school closures. P-EBT provides food supports to help families with children who were receiving free and reduced-price school meals pay for food. https://www.mass.gov/info-details/pandemic-ebt-p-ebt
Grocery store senior hours:
- Costco: 8am-9am,Tuesdays and Thursdays Market Basket: 5:30am-7am, Tues-Thurs Roche Bros: 7am-8am Daily
- Shaw’s/Star Market: 7am-9am Tues-Thurs Stop and Shop 6pm-7:30pm Daily
- Target: first hour of opening every Wednesday (opening hour depending on location)
- Trader Joe’s: 9am to 10am Daily
- Walmart: one hour before official opening on Tuesdays (time depending on location)
- Walgreens: 8am to 9pm Tuesdays (Discounts also available to 55+ on Tuesdays)
- Whole Foods: one hour before official opening Daily (time depending on location)
Foodsource hotline: 1-800-645-8333
A group of Boston-area restaurants has also formed Feeding the Frontline to help deliver food to those in need, including hospitals, first responders, vulnerable populations who can’t leave their homes and local hourly workers.
FamilyWize Anyone needing help with prescriptions costs is encouraged to use FamilyWize. Users can save up to 40% on prescriptions whether they are uninsured or under-insured. Click here to learn more.
MassHealth (800-841-2900), https://www.mahealthconnector.org They have a 24/7 hotline. Must be a MA resident, citizen or legal noncitizen, meet income requirements (depends on household size). There are other requirements for people who have children, are disabled, have HIV etc. Website above also brings you to the Health Connector, which is the state marketplace to find and apply for healthcare coverage.
Prescription Drug Assistance Program 800-243-4636 Helps seniors over 65 and disabled persons can get help paying for prescriptions.
Southcoast Health – COVID-19 Hotline 508-973-1919 Stay up to day with all updates locally at https://www.southcoast.org/important-information-about-the-covid-19-coronavirus/
YMCA Southcoast New Bedford is offering the use of showers from 6 – 7:30 am on Tuesdays and Fridays.
1-800-homeless can be called for additional services
PACE Housing: The Housing Opportunity Center provides limited rental assistance for those individuals and families that are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The program provides referrals to resources and provides housing search lists for people seeking permanent housing. 508-993-0033 or https://paceinfo.org/programs-2/housing-services/
Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (617-573-1100) covers the following programs:
AHVP (Alternative Housing Voucher Program), must be low-income and disabled and under 60 years old https://www.mass.gov/service-details/alternative-housing-voucher-program-ahvp
MA Rental Voucher Program – applicant cannot make more than 50% of federally determined area median income (AMI) https://www.mass.gov/how-to/apply-for-a-rental-voucher
RAFT (Rental Assistance for Families in Transition) – family must make below 50% of AMI. Provides up to $4,000 for families that are homeless or at risk of being homeless. Usually used for rent, but can apply to moving expenses or utilities too. https://www.mass.gov/service- details/learn-about-residential-assistance-for-families-in-transition-raft
State public housing – applicant usually cannot make more than 80% of AMI. https://www.mass.gov/guides/how-to-apply-for-public-housing
Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program – family income must be below 30% of AMI. Usually a last resort recommendation as the waiting list is at least 3 years long in most MA municipalities. https://www.mass.gov/service-details/section-8-housing-choice-voucher-program-hcvp
Emergency Shelter Hotline (617-573-1106) for families only: https://www.mass.gov/how-to/find-emergency-family-shelter
Public Welfare Benefits (Food, Cash Assistance, etc.)
Dept. of Transitional Assistance hotline (877-382-2363) covers these programs:
- SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), must be low-income and a US citizen. Program provides EBT debit card to buy household goods – https://www.mass.gov/snap-benefits-formerly-food-stamps
- TAFDC (Temporary Assistance for Families with Dependent Children), must be low-income and US citizen and have a dependent child or child due within 4 months. Program provides cash assistance payments – https://www.mass.gov/service-details/check-tafdc-eligibility-and-how-to-apply
- EAEDC (Emergency Aid to the Elderly, Disabled and Children), must be low-income and US citizen or legal noncitizen. Must also be over 65 and waiting for SSI, disabled for over 60 days, taking care of a child not closely related to you, in a rehab program, or taking care of a disabled person who otherwise would be an institution https://www.mass.gov/service-details/check-eaedc-eligibility-and-how-to-apply
- SSP (State Supplement Program), provides additional assistance to those waiting on social security income payments. Must be aged 65+, blind or disabled, a US citizen or legal noncitizen, and low-income https://www.mass.gov/service-details/learn-about-massachusetts-state-supplement-program-eligibility-and-payments
- State Funeral Assistance – funerary expenses cannot exceed $3,500, state will cover up to $1,100. 617-348-8420 https://www.mass.gov/service-details/who-can-apply-for-funeral-and-burial-payment-assistance
South Coastal Counties Legal Services (SCCLS) provides free civil (non-criminal) legal assistance to low-income individuals, families, persons with disabilities and also to elders throughout Southeastern Massachusetts. Intake is open Monday through Thursday at 800-244-9023, or visit the website at www.sccls.org to complete an online inquiry.
State crisis hotline (1-877-382-1609).
Can also text HOME to 741741 to text with someone
SAMHSA hotline (1-800-985-5990) is specifically for disaster induced mental health crises. Can also text TalkWithUs to 66746 to text with someone
EMS Program/Mobile Crisis Intervention 24/7 hotline( 1-877-382-1609) to get in contact with a local crisis intervention team
Samaritans of Fall River/New Bedford – a free and confidential Suicide Prevention and Crisis Hot Line staffed by caring, trained volunteers available seven days a week from 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM. This service provides unprejudiced and nonjudgmental support to those who are alone, depressed or in crisis. http://www.samaritans-fallriver.org/ 866-508-4357 or 508-673-3777
U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) provides low interest loans for small business capital. It is accepting applications from Massachusetts businesses at https://www.empoweringsmallbusiness.org/
New Bedford Economic Development Team is also assisting local businesses with applying for resources as they become available. http://www.nbedc.org/covid-19-resources-and-information/
One SouthCoast Chamber Resources: https://onesouthcoast.com/covid-19-resources/
State has waived the waiting period for unemployment and most claims are now processed in a week. Fastest way to do so is online.
Dept. of Unemployment Assistance Claim Center (617-626-6800).
To be eligible for unemployment benefits, you must:
- Have earned at least: $5,100 during the last 4 completed calendar quarters
- Be legally authorized to work in the State
- Be unemployed, or working significantly reduced hours, through no fault of your own
- Be able and willing to begin suitable work without delay when offered
Handbook for claims due to COVID-19- click here
Quickest way to file is online – click here
The Greg Hill Foundation (firstname.lastname@example.org no number listed) has teamed up with Samuel Adams to support those in the Massachusetts restaurant industry who have been impacted by coronavirus-related closures. Their goal is to provide $1,000 grants to as many qualifying full-time restaurant workers as possible. Donate or apply on website.
Comcast Essentials for free/low cost internet services – https://www.internetessentials.com/
PACE Fuel Assistance 508-999-9920 – Deadline to apply is April 30th. Can also help reduce electric bills
LIHEAP (Low Income Heat Energy Assistance Program) (800-632-8175) Available through April 30. Service providers differ on area, list can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/doc/fuel-assistance-program-brochure-for-the-2019-2020-heating-season/download