These weekly updates will provide the latest news and information on what our community, the state, and the federal government are doing as we face an unprecedented pandemic.

Reopening Texas Updates

On May 5, 2020, Governor Abbott announced a new wave of changes to expand the process to re-open the state. Nonessential manufacturing can resume on May 18, with proper social distancing and sanitation. Bars must continue to remain closed.

  • Hair salons, barbershops, tanning salons and nail salons can reopen on Friday, May 8. However, salons can reopen with only one customer per stylist at a time and that people must wait outside or in their vehicles if they don’t have enough room inside to stay 6 feet apart.
  • Gyms will be allowed to reopen on May 18 at 25% occupancy. All equipment must be cleaned in between use and people must stay 6 feet apart while inside gyms and wear gloves while working out. Locker rooms and showers must remain closed.
  • Weddings and funeral services are allowed to continue by following the same social distancing rules laid out for church services. Banquet facilities must follow the same requirements as restaurants, including keeping tables 6 feet apart and limiting occupancy to 25%. 

It is advised that all Texas residents continue to follow all CDC health and safety guidelines.

New Texas COVID-19 Relief Fund

Governor Greg Abbott and the OneStar Foundation have announced the Texas COVID Relief Fund, which will provide critical funding and resources to organizations across the state working on the ground to support the economic recovery of local communities. Funds raised will be distributed through grants focused on the areas of community and economic development, healthcare, and education. Funds will also be used to support local priorities and organizations serving the unmet needs of vulnerable populations and underserved communities.

For more information on the Texas COVID Relief Fund or to make a donation, visit the OneStar Foundation website. 

Relief Grants for Texas Nonprofits

Humanities Texas invites Texas cultural and educational institutions facing financial hardship resulting from the coronavirus pandemic to apply immediately for fast-track Relief Grants. Nonprofit organizations and state and local governmental entities are eligible to apply. Applicants must administer humanities programs that have a significant impact in Texas communities. Small and rural organizations are especially encouraged to apply. The application can be found here.

Applicants may request funds for general operating support or humanities programming. Humanities Texas will make immediate grants of up to $5,000 and, depending upon the availability of funds, will consider requests above this level to a maximum grant of $15,000. Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis.

Humanities Texas staff will hold free weekly webinars in May to discuss Relief Grants and other funding opportunities provided by Humanities Texas, the National Endowment for the Humanities and other entities. The next webinars will be held on Friday, May 8, and Wednesday, May 11.

New Crisis Counseling Services Funding

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has received $5.8 million in federal funding to provide crisis counseling services to Texans who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant allows 31 local mental health and behavioral health authorities to connect Texans to short-term crisis counseling services that include reducing stress and providing emotional support, assisting survivors in reviewing their disaster recovery options, promoting the use or development of healthy coping strategies, connecting survivors with appropriate people and agencies that can help them, and referrals to other disaster recovery programs.

For additional resources visit the Mental Health & Substance Use Resources web page. Texas residents can dial 2-1-1 to learn about programs and services.

Funding for Aging and Disability Resource Centers

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has received approval for a $3 million emergency grant for Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs). ADRCs are a one-stop shop offering resources for older adults, people with disabilities, and caregivers in Texas. Some of the services they provide include transportation to medical appointments, meal delivery, help with housework, daily grooming, and respite care for caregivers.

ADRCs are located throughout Texas and serve every county in the state. More information about them is available here.Texans can also call 855-YES-ADRC (855-937-2372) to learn about programs and services.

Updated Hours For Free COVID-19 Testing in Carrollton

The hours of operation for the free drive-through COVID-19 testing site in Carrollton have changed to Tuesday-Saturday from 7-11 a.m. beginning Tuesday, May 12. The site will be closed on Monday, May 11. Testing will still be offered from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday, May 8 to finish out the previous schedule.

Testing will still take place, weather permitting, in the parking lot of the WMS Distribution Center (1025 W. Trinity Mills Road) to screen those who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 as well as all health care providers and first responders. To determine eligibility and to schedule an appointment, individuals must sign up at DoINeedaCOVID19test.com.

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