Helpful Resources

COVID-19 continues to negatively impact our entire region and we are working to help those affected in a variety of ways. See below for our compilation of helpful resources. If you need other forms of assistance, please call 2-1-1 or 570-517-3954 to speak with an Information and Referral Call Specialist.

HOUSING ASSISTANCE

If you are at risk of becoming homeless or are looking for other assistance, please call 2-1-1 or 570-517-3954 to speak with an information and referral specialist.

Resources for Tenants

The new Rental and Utility Assistance Program put in place by the state of Pennsylvania is not operating yet. Please continue to check this page for updates.

An eviction moratorium is in place until June 30, 2021. This moratorium prevents covered individuals from being removed from their home for non-payment of rent. You must meet certain requirements and provide information to your landlord to be protected by this eviction moratorium. (CDC extends Eviction Moratorium until June 30, 2021)

More information is available here about the National Eviction Moratorium.

A sample declaration form can be completed and provided to your landlord. Be sure to keep proof that you provided this to your landlord (email with read receipt, photo of the letter in drop box, etc.). You can also visit this website to create your own Eviction Moratorium letter:  https://www.covid19evictionforms.com/create-letter

Resources for Landlords

The new Rental and Utility Assistance Program put in place by the state of Pennsylvania is not operating yet. Please continue to check this page for updates.

Pocono Mountains United Way offers an Eviction Mediation Program in which landlords and tenants work together with a mediator to reach an agreement with the goal of avoiding a costly eviction. The program is free, voluntary and confidential. Mediations are limited to tenants with incomes below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level and have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. To schedule a mediation or for more information, please contact our Eviction Mediation Manager at 570-261-8023 or email Mediation@PoconoUnitedWay.org.

This Landlord Toolkit for responding to COVID-19 Effects on Tenants includes sample letters, modified rent and payment plan agreements, and other resources for both landlords and tenants.

Resources for Homeowners

The Monroe County Emergency Mortgage Assistance Grant Program can provide individuals with a minimum of 3 months mortgage assistance with maximum monthly amounts of $1,000. The program is for residents in Monroe County, East Stroudsburg Borough, and Stroudsburg Borough that have a current annual household income at or below 80% of the Area Median Income. Residents must be economically impacted due to COVID-19 and have a housing unit located in Monroe County. For more information, please contact the Redevelopment Authority at 570-421-4300. Deadline to apply is February 26, 2021.

FOOD ASSISTANCE

If you need food assistance, please call 2-1-1 to find a list of food pantries and community meals near you. You can also access an updated list of food pantries and community meals in Monroe County below:

Food Pantries and Community Meals (Excel – Most up to date) Food Pantries and Community Meals (PDF – Updated February 2021)

A search tool from Pocono Mountains Hunger Coalition is available here: https://poconohunger.org/find-food/. Enter your address and determine which pantries and community meals are closest to your location.

Local School District Food Service Websites (including info about free meals for any child 18 and under):

East Stroudsburg Area School District: https://www.esasd.net/domain/984

Pleasant Valley School District: http://pleasantvalleyfoodservice.com/

Pocono Mountain School District: https://www.pmsd.org/Page/116

Stroudsburg Area School District: https://www.sburg.org/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=412693&type=d

SNAP & OTHER BENEFITS

Do you qualify for benefits such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Health Care Coverage, Cash Assistance, Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), or more?

Find out if you qualify here: https://www.compass.state.pa.us/Compass.Web/Screening/DoIQualify#/SelectBenefits

Apply online using the following link or call the Monroe County Assistance Office at 1-877-905-1495 or 570-424-3030.
https://www.compass.state.pa.us/Compass.Web/Public/CMPHome

Temporary Increase in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Benefits:
https://www.dhs.pa.gov/Services/Assistance/Pages/SNAP-Temporary-Increase.aspx

More SNAP on your EBT Card: What you need to know:
https://clsphila.org/coronavirus/snap-supplement-coronavirus/

MENTAL/BEHAVIORAL HEALTH

Persevere PA: COVID-19 Crisis Counseling Program

Trained professionals are available by phone 24/7 to help navigate the stress and uncertainty of these unprecedented times. Call 1-855-284-2494.

National Crisis Text Line

Text HOME to 741741 to reach a Crisis Counselor

Carbon Monroe Pike Mental Health and Developmental Services

Carbon, Monroe, and Pike counties operate a mental health and developmental services program with offices in each county.

Monroe County: 570-421-2901
Carbon County: 610-377-0773
Pike County: 570-296-6484

24/7 Mental Health Crisis Hotline

Carbon, Monroe, Pike Counties: 570-992-0879
New Perspectives Toll Free: 800-849-1868

Advocacy Alliance Warm Line

Warm Line is a confidential, one-on-one telephone support service for individuals from Carbon, Monroe, Pike, Lackawanna, Susquehanna and Wayne counties who have a mental illness and are experiencing sadness or loneliness. It is staffed by individuals who are in recovery and understand the needs of their peers. Call 866-654-8114.

Other Mental Health Resources

Managing Anxiety and Stress about COVID-19, and reducing stress in yourself and others (CDC) View more resources for substance abuse, recovery (AA), suicide prevention and more here

UTILITIES

A utility moratorium is in place until March 31, 2021 for protected customers that are at or below 300% of the Federal Poverty Level.

The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) grant assists low-income families pay their heating bills. LIHEAP offers cash grants and crisis grants. Cash grants help families pay their heating bills and the payment is sent directly to the utility company and deducted from their current balance. Crisis grants are for emergency situations where individuals are in jeopardy of losing their heat. If you have a heating emergency, please contact the Monroe County Assistance Office.

Toll Free: 1-877-905-1495

Phone: 570-424-3030

LIHEAP: 570-424-3517

You can apply online at www.compass.state.pa.us or call the LIHEAP hotline at 1-866-857-7095 to request an application. Applications are due April 9, 2021.

If you are having difficulty making payments to your utility provider:

FILE YOUR TAXES

The IRS filing season for Federal, State, and Local taxes is open until May 17, 2021.

You can file your taxes for free online at MyFreeTaxes.com, sponsored by United Way. MyFreeTaxes is a free, safe and easy way to file your federal and state tax returns for free. This is a direct to consumer, self-preparation product with intuitive and guided questions meant to walk individuals simply through the steps of entering their own data to complete their tax return.

My Free Taxes Offers:

  • No Income Limit - Use this free software no matter how much you earn.
  • No Geographic Limit - Prepare from anywhere and prepare any number of state returns you need.
  • No Age Limit - Prepare your taxes no matter your age.
  • All Common Tax Forms - 1040 or 1040-SR (W-2, 1099-MISC, 1099-SSA for Social Security, 1099-R, Schedule A, Schedule B, Schedule C for businesses, Schedule D, etc.)
  • Help With Stimulus Payments - If you have not received your stimulus payments, you can utilize the software to receive your Recovery Rebate Credits from the CARES Act or COVID Tax Relief Act.
  • No Catch - United Way provides this software completely free to the communities connected with us, as a way of giving back. Please utilize this software and share around!
  • Support - A regularly staffed helpline will be available for phone support with your tax return.

Need Help? Call 866-698-9435. Helpline is staffed daily from 10:00am to 10:00pm EST.

STIMULUS CHECKS

SCAM ALERT: Do not respond to any email, letter, or phone call asking for your personal information – the IRS WILL NOT email or call, nor will ever ask for personal data.

IRS webpage on Economic Impact (Stimulus) Payments:
https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payments

If you didn't get the full Economic Impact Payment, you may be eligible to claim the Recovery Rebate Credit using Free File: If you didn't get any payments or got less than the full amounts, you may qualify for the credit, even if you don't normally file taxes. Learn more about the Recovery Rebate Credit here: https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/recovery-rebate-credit

Get My Payment will confirm if the IRS sent your payment(s) and how the IRS sent your payment: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment

Get My Payment FAQs: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment-frequently-asked-questions

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES OWNERS/NONPROFITS

Federal: SBA COVID-19 Small Business Guidance and Loan Resources

State: COVID-19 Relief Statewide Small Business Assistance

Information on how to support local businesses is available through the Pocono Chamber of Commerce: https://www.greaterpoconochamber.com/

CHILDCARE

Search for child-care and other early learning programs near you: findchildcare.pa.gov

Fee-based School Care Programs:

MEDICATIONS

FamilyWize offers a discount code on prescription medications. You can use the FamilyWize Prescription Discount Savings Card to save money on your prescriptions. Provide the pharmacist with the following information:

BIN: 610194
Card ID: FW100
Group ID: FW100
PCN: FW

This card can be used with or without insurance. This discount is also available on prescription deliveries.

UNEMPLOYMENT

How to File for regular Unemployment Benefits:
https://www.uc.pa.gov/unemployment-benefits/file/Pages/Filing%20Instructions.aspx

Self-employed individuals Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA):
https://www.uc.pa.gov/unemployment-benefits/file/Pages/Filing-for-PUA.aspx

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance FAQ: https://www.uc.pa.gov/COVID-19/CARES-Act/Pages/PUA-FAQs.aspx

For assistance with unemployment issues, please call CareerLink at 570-620-2850

WORKER'S COMPENSATION

Worker's Compensation and COVID-19 FAQ:
https://www.uc.pa.gov/COVID-19/Pages/WC-COVID-FAQs.aspx

EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES

Each school district has a list of educational resources for children. Please view your school district's website as well as the resources below.

Resources for parents and children: https://www.pbs.org/parents

Scholastic Learn at Home: https://learnathome.scholastic.com/thanks.html

Twelve famous museums offering FREE virtual tours: https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/museums-galleries/museums-with-virtual-tours

CONTACT LENDERS

If you have be impacted financially by the COVID-19 pandemic, please reach out to your service providers. Call your credit card companies, lenders, mortgage holders or landlords. They may have payment plans or can inform you about options that are available to you.