What is COVID-19?
On March 11th the World Health Organization declared a pandemic for the Corona Virus (COVID-19) and on March 17th the Province of BC declared a state of emergency.
As BC prepares to enter phase 3, businesses continue to open, and we continue to be fortunate to expand our social circles. It is still critical to social distance, keep your circle small, and avoid non essential travel. Here are some guidelines from the Provincial Government on social distancing.
You can find the most current COVID-19 stats here.
The following resources continue to be updated to support you. Also, stay connected to our Facebook page as we continue to share community resources on a regular basis.
Think you have symptoms or need medical support?
COVID-19 self assessment tool.
Well Health virtual clinic - you will need a BC Health Card.
Telus - Babylon Health App.
First Nations virtual doctor of the day. - Members of BC First Nations with limited access to their doctors can make virtual appointments by calling 1-855-344-3800.
Concerns about aging out during COVID-19?
*NEW* COVID-19 supports for youth and young adults have been extended until September 30th! This means that youth will not age out during this time and independent living and youth agreements will be extended. Young adults on an AYA will also continue to receive funding.
Click here to read the announcement from MCFD.
Social workers are modifying agreements to allow youth and caregivers to extend their current living arrangements once a youth reaches 19 years old so you can age out safely and stay where you are. Social workers across the province will contact you.
Will covid-19 affect my AYA agreement?
*NEW* COVID-19 supports for youth on an AYA have been extended until September 30th, 2020! Click here to read the announcement from MCFD.
Young adults between the ages of 19 and 27 who are currently on Agreements with Young Adults (AYA) will continue to receive financial support until September 30th, 2020.
Any "paused" AYA time during the pandemic will not count toward the maximum 48-month program duration or age limit of 27.
MCFD will also reach out to young adults who have recently aged out to provide additional support as required.
*NEW* Temporary Life Skills Program
MCFD temporary Life Skills Programs for those currently on AYA or who choose to age out onto an AYA between April 1 and September 30th, 2020:
MCFD has relaxed the requirements to a minimum of 5 hours per week of online programs (down from 12). MCFD has also relaxed and added many options for young people to meet the 5 hour requirement, hence the temporary life skills programs. The Temporary Life Skills Program is available for any young adult who applies and is eligible for AYA. All emergency measures have been approved until September 30, 2020.
Check out our AYA info page for more details on MCFD’s COVID-19 Temporary life skills Program.
Click here for MCFD's Temporary Life-Skills Program infographic.
Ways to stay connected
The Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks - Fed Connects!
Events will take place via Facebook on the Fed Connects group. *search ''Fed Connects' on Facebook and request to join*
Freeze on rent increases and evictions:
Renters will need to pay their rent in full beginning September 1st, 2020.
Landlords have to give tenants until July, 2021 to repay any outstanding rent. You will need to make a payment plan with your landlord. *Note* If the repayment plan payments are not made an eviction notice can be issued.
Landlords can now give notice of rent increases, but these will not come into effect until December 1st, 2020.
Evictions for anything other than non-payment of rent are now allowed.
BC-Temporary Rental Supplement Program. This supplement will provide up to $500 to assist low and moderate income renters who are struggling to pay rent due to COVID-19. *Extended until August 31st*
Where can I find mental health support?
Fraser Health crisis line - 604-951-8855 or 1-877-820-7444.
Psychological support service - Free mental health support via phone call
Foundry BC - Offers virtual drop in counselling sessions through chat, phone calls, or video calls. To access this service, call 1-833-F0UNDRY (yes, that's F0undry with a zero! or 1-833-308-6379) to book an appointment. Click here for up to date hours of operation and services offered.
BC COVID-19 Mental Health Network: A group of mental health professionals are offering free, short term, one on one counselling to those struggling with COVID-19 related impacts. To inquire about an appointment please email email@example.com with your name, contact info and general availability.
KUU-US crisis line. Available 24/7 to provide support to Indigenous people in BC.
Fact sheet on anxiety and COVID-19.
Here to talk. Available to post secondary students 24/7.
Online stress management program by Shoppers Drug Mart and SilverClould Health
What financial support is available to me?
Federal government Employment Insurance (EI) *Self-employed people can now apply for these benefits as well*
Laid off due to work closure? Apply for regular EI.
Unable to work due to quarantine or sickness? Apply for Employment insurance (EI) Sickness benefit.
Laid off/unable to work and ineligible for EI?
Canada Emergency Response Benefit. *CERB benefits have been extended until August 31st* Click here for more details.
This is a taxable benefit and tax will not be deducted from your payments. Put some aside to pay the taxes next year.
If your income is over $1000 per month, you will not be eligible for the CERB benefit.
Canada Emergency Student Benefit: *Applications now open*
Students and recent graduates who do not qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit can apply for this benefit. This benefit would provide $1250 per month for eligible students or $2000 per month for eligible students with dependants or disabilities. Available May 2020 - August 2020.
B.C Emergency Benefit for workers: *Click here for application*
A one-time $1000 payment to people whose ability to work has been affected due to COVID-19.
B.C residents who recieve EI or the New Canada Emergency Benefit are eligible. You can apply until December 2nd, 2020.
COVID-19 support for income and disability assistance.
If you are on income assistance or disability assistance and not receiving EI or CERB, you will automatically receive a $300 supplement on your April, May, June, July and August cheques.
CERB and EI are also temporarily exempt, which means they have no effect on your regular income assistance or disability assistance.
Student loan repayments: Effective March 30 student loan repayment will be suspended until September 30th, 2020. Interest will not be charged, and you do not need to apply.
BC Hydro: BC Hydro’s Crisis Fund Grant for up to $600.
ICBC: ICBC autoplan customers on a monthly payment plan may defer their payment for up to 90 days with no penalty.
Representative for Children and Youth (RCY) update
RCY staff have transitioned to work remotely and their advocates are available and ready to help despite the current unique challenges. If you need support from the RCY call 1-800-476-3933.
They also invite community agencies and service providers to apprise us of any issues and concerns with service delivery and the impact on children, youth, families and young adults who are vulnerable. This will assist them in doing their work with government ministries and public bodies to raise systemic issues. Please send your comments/concerns via email to COVID19@rcybc.ca.