Financial and emergency resources for people struggling through the pandemic, education and coping tools for children, and links to more information about federal stimulus checks and government-sponsored loans.
Emergency Support (Maine 211)
Maine 211 is a live-staffed resource that can help Maine people get access to basic needs, such as food, shelter, transportation, financial assistance, and household goods. 211 also has resources for people in crisis - whether it’s a situation of abuse, someone who needs to get out of a dangerous or threatening living situation, substance abuse, suicide prevention, or a natural or man-made disaster, there are trained people there to help. Call or text 211 on your phone, or visit 211maine.org
*If you or someone you know is in an immediate health or safety crisis, always call 911.
Cumberland County has partnered with the Opportunity Alliance to offer an emergency rental relief for families that have been financially impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic and cannot afford to pay their rent. Rental relief is available for up to three months for rent not covered by any other Federal, State or Local program. The three month period is for prior months and/or the current month. The applicant is the renter and the benefit is paid directly to the landlord. If you received the $500 in rental assistance through Maine Housing, you can still qualify for this program.
Find food pantries and their service options near your home, with the click of a button.
USDA Meals for Kids site finder: Find places that provide meals for kids when schools are closed.
The MaineHousing COVID-19 Rent Relief Program is for renters who cannot afford to pay their rent due to circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic. The program is designed to provide a one time bridge payment of up to $500, until the federal relief funds get to the individuals who need them.
WASHINGTON — The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service today announced that distribution of economic impact payments will begin in the next three weeks and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. However, some taxpayers who typically do not file returns will need to submit a simple tax return to receive the economic impact payment.
Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive an economic impact payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples and up to $500 for each qualifying child. Tax filers with adjusted gross income up to $75,000 for individuals and up to $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns will receive the full payment. For filers with income above those amounts, the payment amount is reduced by $5 for each $100 above the $75,000/$150,000 thresholds. Single filers with income exceeding $99,000 and $198,000 for joint filers with no children are not eligible. Social Security recipients and railroad retirees who are otherwise not required to file a tax return are also eligible and will not be required to file a return.
Follow this link to gain access to the state unemployment web site, which guides applicants for Unemployment Insurance through the process. As of May 1 2020, applicants who newly qualify for Unemployment - like those who are self employed - can apply for Unemployment under the federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program.
COVID-19 Relief Consumer Loan Program provides no- to low-interest consumer loans through a loan guarantee program involving Maine’s banks, credit unions, and FAME. Interested borrowers should contact their local bank or credit union (not FAME) to see if the lender is offering this program and to apply. The program offers loans of up to $5,000 (minus any unemployment benefits received by borrower). A borrower may apply for up to three (3) loans, one per each 30-day period.
Manpower has partnered with Phoenix University to offer free certification courses in a handful of career paths for displaced workers.
A guide to help households with low incomes gain access to internet service for free or reduced rates.
For Students, Families and Caregivers
The Maine Department of Education COVID resources page has resources for distance learning, caring for children with special needs at home, and tools to help kids cope with living through this incredibly challenging time.
Check with your local school district to see if there are distance learning and nutritional resources available for your children from their community school.
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Office of Child and Family Services (OCFS), MaineAEYC and Maine Roads to Quality Professional Development Network are working together to create a temporary listing of the child care programs that are open and able to offer care to children of essential workers. Follow the link for guidance on accessing care, and a list of programs with available space, sorted by county.
For checklists, schedules, contact forms to submit business feedback and all other state-level resources for reopening your business, visit the Maine DECD website.
The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.
SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.
You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program.
Lenders may begin processing loan applications as soon as April 3, 2020. The Paycheck Protection Program will be available through June 30, 2020.
COVID-19 Relief Lender Insurance Program provides commercial loan insurance of 50-75% to lenders who make loans to Maine businesses experiencing interruption or hardship due to COVID-19.
COVID-19 Relief Interim SBA Finance Loan Program provides FAME Direct Loans of up to $100,000 with special terms available to eligible borrowers who provide proof of commitment for SBA financing. The FAME loan would be originated for use to the business owner until the SBA loan is funded. The SBA loan would then pay-off the FAME loan.
COVID-19 Relief Business Direct Loan Program provides FAME Direct Loans of up to $50,000 with special terms available to Maine-based businesses experiencing interruption or hardship due to COVID-19. *FAME has received more than the allotted amount in applications for this program, but are encouraging businesses to keep applying because not all current applications will be approved.