Tips and tools for all businesses as we face these challenging times together.
The St. Francis Small Business Development Center is offering a free webinar on 5/28 from 6-7pm to learn how to limit the impact on your business, employees, and customers from COVID-19. Follow this link to register: https://pasbdc.ecenterdirect.com/events/26830
Our local SCORE - Alleghenies Branch of Westmoreland County SCORE is offering a free webinar for female business owners. Click the link for more information.
Stabilization Strategies for Women-Owned Businesses in the Age of COVID-19
Professionals Auto Body is offering to cleanse any vehicle with an air purifier free of charge. The air purifier is able to capture airborne virus-sized particles. Once trapped, viruses cannot multiply on their own or remain infectious for long. The air purifier also eliminates bacteria, allergens, mold and mildew. The cleansing only takes 3 minutes and customers must wait outside while it’s being done. To have your vehicle cleansed, stop at Professionals Auto Body in Duncansville, park in front of the estimating bay overhead door and call the shop to let us know you’re here (814-696-8466).
Looking for a summer 2020 Intern? South Hills School of Business and Technology has received "temporary approval" for distance education including internships from the PA Department of Education and our
institutional accreditor ACCSC."
Students from the following programs are available:
Business Administration Management-Marketing
Software Development and Programming
The internship is 330 hours over a 10-12 week period. It can be paid or unpaid. Interested? Contact Career Services for more info: email@example.com
Moore Power Sales Register today for this Live Streaming Program “Selling on the Other Side… Is your Sales Force Prepared?” April 16, 2020 9:00 – 10:00 AM EDT https://attendee.gototraining.com/r/5326036930188013058. Moore Power Sales will offer this complimentary event every Thursday for the next few weeks.
Interaction Dynamics Group is offering assistance for businesses that are struggling with creating a recovery plan. They are offering free information to leaders now to help prepare them for the next stage of working through this crisis. For more information, contact Kevin Sensenig at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 769-9110.
The Arc of Blair County:
The Arc of Blair County is offering virtual programs. Each week they offer a different program. All are welcome to participate. You just need a phone, tablet or computer. Call The Arc of Blair County at 814-946-1011 and they will set you up.
Effective immediately, Southern will offer hospitals, doctors’ offices, and public service agencies free counter-to-counter shipping of medical and cleaning supplies between our hub cities and rural communities.
Productivity Down? What about Security? The UDNI Team is here to help!
New Pig has critical supplies in stock and available to ship same day in response to COVID-19 and facility need.
To view New Pig's entire line of products specifically selected to aid those on the front lines of the pandemic across all industries, please visit newpig.com or call 1-800-HOT-HOGS.
McCartney's is now offering Home Delivery!
We're now introducing HOME DELIVERY of supplies, furniture, and machines/copiers to help you support your staff working from home!
We want to continue to help our customers keep working and support our local economy throughout this crisis.
A message from PSECU: Financial Hardship Relief
If you’re facing a financial hardship, please contact us at 800.237.7328 to speak with a member service representative about payment options that may be available to you, which may include:
• Skip-a-Pay, available for most auto and personal loans
• Deferred payments
• Loan term extensions to lower monthly payments
Debbie Eckenrode - Farmers Insurance
We're extending coverage, for no additional charge, to customers with Farmers- branded auto and motorcycle policies who have started making supply deliveries using their personal vehicles through April 30, 2020. This will happen automatically customers do not need to take any action to make this effective on their policy. Customers with questions can call 888-327-6335.
United Way Emergency Relief Fundraiser
Have you experienced income loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic?
The United Way of Blair County COVID-19 Relief Fund was established to provide assistance to Blair County individuals and families who are experiencing income loss as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Relief funds are now available and will be distributed weekly in the form of food vouchers to local participating grocers. Please apply for funds on our website.
Resources for Businesses from Doing Better Business
Call for volunteers from the City of Altoona
Click here for the volunteer form.
Share your stories with Altoona Community Theatre
Healing Patch Children's Grief Program offers alternative support, validation of our responses to the pandemic
Supporting grieving children and families has long been the priority of the Healing Patch Children's Grief Program. Now that families are not able to gather physically for peer support groups, the Healing Patch is providing other ways for families to connect and offering validation for all people in response to COVID-19.
"We wanted a way to capitalize on all of the extra time children are spending with their families," says Shalen Steinbugl, Healing Patch volunteer coordinator/grief specialist. "We came up with the idea of 'Time Together Tuesdays.' We hope these activities are helpful to not only children who are grieving the death of a loved one, but also to children who are grieving everyday losses that have occurred because of the pandemic."
"Time Together Tuesdays" include various activities, mostly general and some related to grief and loss, using common household items.
Activities are shared on the Healing Patch Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/healingpatchbyhomenursingagency
In addition to weekly activities, the Healing Patch continues to take calls from the community concerning the best ways to support a grieving child(ren), enroll interested families into the program and mail grief resources. Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer is encouraged to go through the initial steps to apply, as volunteer training is slated to begin in July.
Recognizing another need in the community to address widespread loss, the Healing Patch is providing helpful information and validation to the turbulent emotions everyone is facing.
"As a society we have experienced an exorbitant amount of loss in a very short period," shares Healing Patch Coordinator Melody Ray. "I am referring to not only losses to death but the multitude of other losses the virus has inflicted - loss of income, loss of milestone events, loss of predictable routines. Individuals living alone or in a long-term care facility are longing for physical touch from loved ones. The list goes on and on, not to mention feelings of loss of security, trust and what we knew as normalcy."
Melody continues, "I feel we at the Healing Patch have an obligation to help the community identify the multitude of emotions that they are having as normal and natural and to put a word to what they are experiencing - grief. Our hope is that by reading these 10 OK's of COVID-19, you will feel validated in your experience and that you will allow more patience for yourself and others."
The OK's of COVID-19: Validating Our Responses to the Pandemic
It is OK to have many feelings at once.
On any given day, you may experience a multitude of feelings, such as feeling overwhelmed by all of the daily changes, angry at cancelled events, disappointed by missed opportunities, sad that you cannot spend time with family and friends, wary when you cross someone at the grocery store, or too exhausted to even get out of bed. These feelings you are having are normal and natural. What is most important is that you cope with them by not hurting yourself or others. As strong as a feeling may be, feelings do change.
It is OK to feel scared for your own health and for the
health of those you love.
Perhaps you have an underlying health disorder. Perhaps you have elderly parents or grandparents. Or perhaps you or a loved one is working on the front lines. This may be the first time in your life that you have faced your own mortality, or perhaps it is triggering feelings from prior losses you have already experienced. Concerns for your health and/or loved ones' health are legitimate.
It is OK to have both good and bad days.
Some days, the gravity of the situation feels overwhelming. You see ongoing news headlines of increased infections and deaths, you struggle to find basic needs at the grocery store, you get distracted with school and work obligations, you experience financial stressors, and you worry about the future. This is a hard day, you're struggling, and your outlook is bleak. The next day, you may feel better. Maybe a family member or friend reached out, you see neighbors helping neighbors, you listen to your favorite music, you enjoy nature or turn to your higher power through prayer. This is a good day. Regardless of which type of day you are having, it is OK. Being human has its peaks and valleys.
It is OK to give yourself grace regarding your own mental and emotional capabilities.
Everyone's experience with the pandemic is unique. Some are losing jobs, some are juggling working from home while managing children and schooling. Some are working the front lines of the pandemic as essential workers. Regardless of your situation, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the ongoing changes to your schedule/routine. You may feel that as soon as you start to accept and understand a change, you are hit with yet another blow, such as extended social distancing guidelines, stay-at-home orders, or an unexpected financial loss.
Although you strive to do well and be productive, the stress of this new normal may be taking a toll on your productivity. Be patient with yourself and others as these uncharted waters are being navigated. If needed, reach out to mental health professionals for assistance. Seeking assistance is not a sign of weakness but rather of strength.
It is OK to be forgiving regarding your physical limitations.
The mental stressors of the pandemic can be seen in physical ways. You may find that you are eating and sleeping more or less compared to before the pandemic. You may find yourself sluggish, or perhaps you have more energy than before. You may find your heart and head racing at times and/or experience headaches or stomach aches. You may find yourself reaching for an extra glass of wine or beer. You may be finding it difficult to stay on track with healthy eating and exercise goals. All of these responses are normal in times of increased stress and grief. Strive to find balance and utilize healthy coping skills, but be kind to yourself when you go off course.
It is OK to recognize that you are only in control of yourself and your own behaviors.
You may notice that others are not following social distancing guidelines, such as still having family gatherings or meeting up with friends. While the majority of people are dealing with the pandemic the best way they know how, some people are in denial, which is a common grief reaction. They are unable to recognize the importance of social distancing for themselves and for others. Although this can be frustrating, it is important to recognize that you can only control your own behaviors.
It is OK to grieve ALL losses at this time.
There are many individuals struggling with unimaginable losses at this time, such as the complete loss of income or the death of a loved one.
Without discrediting a loss of this nature, it is important to recognize that all losses, regardless if society considers them to be small or large, can cause people to grieve. Some people may have been looking forward to walking across the stage at graduation, or cheering on their team at their first-ever professional sporting event, or marrying their best friend in front of all of their loved ones.
Suddenly, these events have been postponed or may never happen. Allow yourself and others to grieve.
It is OK to talk about your experiences and concerns with people who will listen without judgment.
You may find that your family members or closest friends are not able to offer you a listening ear at this time. Maybe their hardships are "worse" than yours and you feel guilty sharing about something they would deem as trivial. Or maybe they would prefer to just not talk about things and to keep moving forward. Regardless, it is important to find someone you can talk to, whether that be another family member or friend or an online support group, where you feel heard and understood.
It is OK to find meaning and experience personal growth.
Although unplanned, the pandemic may have created the opportunity for you to slow down in life, to appreciate sit-down meals with family, to find gratitude in the little things, or to reevaluate your own goals for the future. Perhaps you have more time to read a book or develop a new hobby. Maybe you find ways to help your community by making masks, giving blood, or finding new volunteer opportunities.
It is OK to embrace the unknown future and to still remain hopeful.
The future is certainly unknown at this point. Will we ever return to the way things used to be or will we have a "new normal"? When can we resume our daily activities without fear or hesitation? These are questions that we may be grappling with for some time, but the most important thing to remember is although the situation is open-ended, it is temporary. It is OK to still dream and to be hopeful for a better future.
For more information about Healing Patch services or volunteer opportunities, please visit http://www.facebook.com/healingpatchbyhomenursingagency
or call 1-800-445-6262.