Below are a number of services, sorted by category, which Girls Write Now has compiled to help our community during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and the current state of our country. This list is regularly updated as we learn of more resources and companies enacting Coronavirus-specific policies.*
*Girls Write Now is in the process of vetting these resources but in the meantime, they will remain on our page so that others can still access them.
- Coronavirus Hotline for New York State: 1-888-364-3065
- Register for Notify NYC here or by texting COVID to 692-692 to stay up-to-date on all Coronavirus matters.
- Sign up for email updates on the evolving COVID-19 situation from New York State here.
- Find a COVID-19 test site near you at nyc.gov/covidtest.
- Find a COVID-19 vaccine site near you at vaccinefinder.nyc.gov.
Mental Health & Wellness
- 7 Cups: Online emotional support service where you can anonymously chat with trained volunteer listeners for free.
- Headspace: In partnership with Governor Cuomo, Headspace is offering free access to a special NY collection of meditation, sleep, and movement exercises are here to support New Yorkers through stressful and challenging times.
- Project HOPE-Northside: Project Hope with Northside Center for Child Development is a FEMA funded program in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. They offer virtual crisis counseling services to the community (Confidential, Anonymous and Free), as well as providing psychoeducation around responses to trauma related to COVID-19, coping skills workshops, connecting people to resources for food, job training assistance, mental health, and substance abuse services.
- Insight Timer Guided Meditations: Insight Timer offers 30,000 free audio guided meditations.
- NYC Well: NYC Well is a connection to free, confidential mental health support. Speak to a counselor via phone, text, or chat and get access to mental health and substance use services, in more than 200 languages, 24/7.
Text: Text “WELL” to 65173
- NYC Well Mental Health Tips: NYC Well’s 10 tips to staying mentally healthy.
- NYC Well Stress-Relief Steps: NYC Well’s 9 ways to have less stress in under a minute.
- Shine: The Shine app offers daily mental health support, a new self-care strategy everyday, and a global community to help you feel less alone.
- GWN Teen Health Resources: Other mental health and wellness resources we’ve compiled for teens that list specific resources for LGBTQ+ youth, substance abuse, sexual health, etc.
- GWN Resources for the War in Ukraine and Overseas Conflict: Resources for discussing the war in Ukraine, our Community Chat: Writing Our Way Through War and writing prompts from Sepideh Moafi’s Friday Night Salon
Write through your emotions with these wellness-inspired prompts from past Friday Night Salons.
- Speaking the Unspeakable: Writing Yourself into Poems with Diana Whitney and Lynn Melnick. Write a poem rooted in a taboo emotion. EX: SADNESS, RAGE, LONGING, DESIRE, SHAME, ETC.
- Speak Your Truth: Finding Honesty Through Writing Poetry with Jasmin Kaur. I am free when… Finish this sentence. Write whatever comes to your brain, in prose or poetry, like a stream of consciousness. Try to incorporate metaphor and simile.
- Memory, Metaphor, & Magic: Writing Poetic Memoir with Arisa White. Bring attention to someone whose absence has affected you. Where do you feel it in your body? Write down the part of your body where you feel the absence. Describe the feeling as a series of colors and objects. Ask your absence a question. Write this question down. Turn it into a poem.
- Telling Your Story Through Podcasts with Dr. Joy Harden Bradford. I find myself comparing myself to others most often when _______.
- Making Art Out of Heartache: Songwriting with Anna Witiuk. Write a letter addressed to a person who “broke your heart,” hurt your feelings or lied to you in some way. Circle the keywords (words that stand out and/or are important to you) in your letter. Can you find a theme? These keywords are a great way to find a hook or repeated chorus for your song.
- Belonging: From Refugee to Hollywood with Sepideh Moafi. What does it mean to belong? What gives you a sense of belonging? Do you think we as humans need to have a sense of belonging? Why/why not? When was the last time you felt a sense of belonging? Describe this memory.
- Writing About Identity with Zaina Arafat. Continue this prompt: “I am both…” In doing so, think of a contradiction that exists within you (I am both extroverted and introverted, I am both messy and clean, I am both American and Arab), and show us how you embody that contradiction, what being “both” looks like for you.
Black Lives Matter Resources
- Document created by and for NYC youth with many Black Lives Matter Resources.
- Therapy for Black Girls Podcast is a weekly chat about all things mental health, personal development, and all the small decisions we can make to become the best possible versions of ourselves.
- Therapy for Black Girls Providers: Find therapists specifically for Black girls in your area.
- Black Girls Smile Resources: A list of mental health organizations and resources for Black girls.
- Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation: Currently providing free virtual therapy.
- Instagram accounts to follow: @thenapministry @healingwhileblack @selfcareisforeveryone @ethelsclub @inclusivetherapists @diveinwell @sistaafya @healhaus
- CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers
- Q Chat Space is is a digital LGBTQ+ center where teens 13-19 join live, chat-based, professionally facilitated, online support groups. Conversations are facilitated by experienced staff who work at LGBTQ+ centers around the country.
- imi (eye-me) is a free, digital, research-backed, mental health tool that supports and helps LGBTQ+ teens explore and affirm their identity and learn practical ways to cope with sexual and gender minority stress that are helpful, relevant, inclusive, and joyful.
- NYC Grab-and-Go Meals: ALL New Yorkers can get three free Grab-and-Go meals daily at the entrance of 400 Meal Hubs through the city. Meals Hubs will operate for children and families from 7:30 am to 11:30 am, and for adults from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, Mondays through Fridays. Any New Yorker can pick up meals at any of the 400 locations as of April 3rd and until further notice. Vegetarian and halal options available at all sites. No registration, ID, or documentation required. Text “FOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or use the DOE search tool to find a Meal Hub near you.
- Food Bank for NYC: Find food pantries and soup kitchens near you.
- World Central Kitchen: WCK will distribute fresh, individually packaged grab-and-go meals to local families during lunchtime at pick-up locations at various locations in NYC, Newark, and Elizabeth.
- Invisible Hands: Volunteer-run initiative offering free delivery of groceries (as well as prescriptions, and other general errands) for elderly, immunocompromised, or otherwise at-risk individuals.
- SNAP Online Ordering: You can order your groceries online while still using your Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits at select stores. To apply for, or renew your SNAP or Cash Assistance benefits, go to http://nyc.gov/accesshra or download the mobile app.
- Imperfect Foods: Low-cost online food retailer that delivers fresh produce and other groceries to your home.
- NYCDOE Technology Support: NYCDOE will provide technology and materials necessary for remote learning for students who need it. If you would like to request a device for a NYC student in your family, please fill out this form. The DOE will use the contact information you provide to get in touch with you to discuss when and where you can pick up a device. Priority will be given to students most in need, and all devices are granted on a temporary basis and will later need to be returned. There is a limit of one device per student. If you need help with this, please contact your Guidance Counselor.
- Comcast Internet Essentials: Affordable in-home Wi-Fi for low-income households. New customers will receive two months of free service.
- Charter Communications/ Spectrum: Free broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who don’t already have a Spectrum broadband subscription.
- Spectrum Internet Assist: High-speed broadband internet for low-income households.
- Access from AT&T program: Internet access for qualifying limited income households at $10 a month.
- More information
- Back to School COVID Guide for Parents: Coverage has created a guide for parents of young children to help their children get back to in-person learning and options are available to parents who want alternatives to in-person learning.
- Applying to College as an Undocumented/DACA Student: CollegeBoard has compiled a lot of useful information for undocumented/DACA students applying to college.
- Guide to Higher Education as an Undocumented Student: Best Value Schools has compiled information on applying to college and scholarships as an undocumented/DACA student.
- FAFSA FAQ for Undocumented/DACA Students
- How to Apply to College: The Ultimate Guide: Study.com compiled the ultimate guide for applying to college, including an outline of the full college application process, tips for completing the Common App and Common App essay, interview tips and sample questions, and college touring advice.
- Girls Who Code (At Home): Girls Who Code is offering free CS educational activities, available to download on their site. Every week, they release new activities of varying levels of difficulty.
- Brainfuse: Brainfuse offers a bank of videos, activities, a writing lab, and other resources that are available to students 24/7. These services are accessible with your library card. New York residents can apply for a library card through the SimplyE app.
- Brooklyn Public Library’s Learning Express Library 3.0: Practice tests and other study materials for the GED/HSE/TASC, HiSET, TASC, SAT, elementary school and middle school standardized tests, civil service, technical, and other professional exams.
- Khan Academy: Khan Academy is a nonprofit organization that offers free online educational support and webinars in a number of subjects, at all grade levels. They’ve also compiled a list of distance learning resources.
- Ivy League Courses: Ivy League schools are currently offering 450 free courses in a number of subjects.
- NYCDOE Learn-At-Home Guides: The NYCDOE offers worksheets with activities to do at home in a variety of subjects.
- NYCDOE Special Education Services: If your child has an IEP, there are a number of services available to them. If you have any questions, contact the DOE Special Education Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- NYCDOE Learning Bridges: As public schools begin blended learning schedules where students will have some school days in person, and some school days remotely, the NYCDOE has launched a new childcare program, Learning Bridges. Learning Bridges will provide free child care options for children from 3-K through 8th grade on days when they are scheduled for remote learning.
- New York Public Library Digital Resources: Although New York Public Libraries are closed for the time being due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the NYPL’s Digital Resources offer a number of online services accessible with your library card, including e-books, e-journals, and their digital history archives. New York residents can apply for a library card through the SimplyE app.
- NYPL College Counseling & College Prep: The New York Public Library offers a number of college prep resources and programs, including one-on-one sessions (30 minutes to an hour) with a College and Career Pathways librarian to get individual post-secondary readiness assistance online.
- NYPL Tutoring Services: The NYPL is offering online tutoring to provide families with homework help, enrichment activities, and remote learning support through Brainfuse. Students in grades K–12 can access free, remote, one-on-one tutoring in a wide range of subjects and levels. Tutoring is offered in both English and Spanish, daily from 2 PM to 11 PM via chat. These services are accessible with your library card. New York residents can apply for a library card through the SimplyE app.
- W3Schools: W3Schools is an educational website specific to coding. They offer free tutorials, references, and exercises to learn a variety of coding languages.
- Psychology Degree Guide for Single Parents: Resources for single parents pursuing or interested in pursuing a degree in psychology.
- Lost Wages Assistance (LWA): New York State has now been approved for two rounds of the $300 Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program. New Yorkers who are already qualified for the LWA program will receive an email and/or text message from the DOL informing them they do not need to take any action to receive LWA benefits. New Yorkers who need to certify for the LWA program will receive a secure DocuSign email from the DOL that must be filled out and submitted to be eligible for LWA benefits.
- Coronavirus Financial Impact Loan: The Hebrew Free Loan Society has created a Coronavirus Financial Impact Loan Program which provides interest-free loans of $2,000-$5,000 to residents of New York City’s five boroughs, Westchester, or Long Island who are facing financial challenges caused by the Coronavirus outbreak (you don’t have to be Jewish to receive this loan).
- NYC Small Business Services: There are a number of services geared towards small businesses and small business owners impacted by COVID-19.
- NYC Pandemic Benefits: See what pandemic benefits you might be eligible for, including healthcare, SNAP, and paid/sick leave.
- Poets & Writers COVID-19 Resources: Poets & Writers’ has compiled a list of resources for writers, librarians, booksellers, and readers impacted by COVID-19 from financial and legal assistance to resources for accessing books online.
- Student Loan Debt Tips: NYC Consumer Affairs has compiled a list of tips and important information for Student Loan Holders.
- WomenArts Emergency Funds: WomenArts compiled a list of emergency funds to help artists across all disciplines find organizations where they can apply for funding.
- Fair Fares NYC: Low-income New Yorkers can get a 50-percent discount on public transportation.
- Girls Write Now Recreational Resources: Fun resources for you to use on your downtime, from Girls Write Now’s Recommended Reading List to yoga videos and more!
- NYC Public Safety Tool Kit: A guide that provides New Yorkers with best practices and strategies to employ intervention and prevention anti-violence activities in neighborhoods across the city, provide information about how to report information about a crime safely and anonymously, and offer resources to help families and neighborhoods in the aftermath of a violent event.
For 25 years, Girls Write Now has been breaking down barriers of gender, race, age and poverty to mentor the next generation of writers and leaders who are impacting businesses, shaping culture and creating change. Thank you for joining our movement.