Governor Baker announced The Baker-Polito Administration’s comprehensive plan to safely reopen the Massachusetts economy, get people back to work, and ease social restrictions while minimizing the health impacts of COVID-19. Visit https://www.mass.gov/
Learn about the four – phase approach to reopening the economy.
Federal Charitable Giving Incentive
The CARES Act contains a one-time, above-the-line deduction for cash contributions of up to $300 made to qualifying charities. All taxpayers would be eligible to take the deduction, even people who use the standard deduction. Donors who itemize their deductions can deduct up to 100% AGI for cash gifts in 2020. The incentive applies to contributions made in 2020 and would be claimed on tax forms next year.
Williamstown Community Chest cannot offer tax advice. Please consult your tax advisor as to the best way to make tax-advantaged charitable contributions.
- Daily Briefings from The Town of Williamstown & the Williamstown Council on Aging
- Northern Berkshire COVID Operations Center: Serves as a centralized hub for the communities of North Adams, Adams, Cheshire, Clarksburg, Savoy, New Ashford, Florida and Williamstown; Stamford, VT; as well for MCLA and Williams College. The purpose of this Center is to coordinate efforts, resources, and information within the region. If individuals become aware of resources, needs, or if there are individuals who would like to volunteer, please call the Command Center at 413.662.3614 or email at email@example.com to share information.
- Up to Date COVID-19 News from The Berkshire Eagle
- Berkshire Health Systems Helpline – 855.262.5465, answered 8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. 7 days a week. People should contact their primary care physician if they have concerns. Testing must be authorized through primary care. The BHS Helpline can answer many questions regarding finding a primary care physician, testing, or other health related issues.
- Community Legal Aid (CLA) has a new Unemployment Project to help people apply for benefits, especially if they are encountering technology or language barriers, or if they are otherwise having trouble getting approved. Call 855-CLA-LEGAL or https://communitylegal.org/
get-help/ for help. Also, please contact us if your landlord is not following the new eviction moratorium law that prevents evictions in most cases. Click here for more information about the new law. Although CLA is closed to the public at this time, we are still open and taking cases involving public benefits, elder, housing, family, and immigration (through our subsidiary, Central West Justice Center). Please refer to our website at https://communitylegal.org for a full list of what we do.
- Community Legal Aid is now assisting low-income families and students in Berkshire County with educational issues. Our educational law attorney will provide assistance and advice with COVID-19 related and other education issues families face now and in the future. Learn more.
- State of Massachusetts Resources & Information
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health
- Mass211: Massachusetts residents can call 2-1-1 at any time for real-time COVID-19 information, resources and referrals in multiple languages.
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health: http://bit.ly/COVID211
- MA Consumer Protection Hotline: 617.727.8400
- CDC Recommended Use of Cloth Face Coverings: CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain ( e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies ), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
Food Resource Updates:
North Adams Public schools will launch a dinner service as part of the grab-and-go meal distribution program beginning April 27th. Dinner for North Adams children age 18 or younger will be available via curbside pickup at Greylock Elementary School from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Weekend dinner meals can be picked up on Friday between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. along with Friday’s dinner. For additional information visit North Adams Public Schools website.
Wigwam Western Summit: Please reserve your hot meals on Facebook or call 413.338.2900 by 6:00 p.m. on Saturday. Meals will include bread, pastries and produce donated by the Al Nelson Friendship Center.
First Baptist Church of North Adams will resume its Saturday meal program on June 20th from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
McCann Technical School is now offering take-and-go dinners and breakfast for the next day, Monday through Friday, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. for youth 18 and under from North Adams, Adams, Cheshire and the towns of the Northern Berkshire School Union. Please pick up meals in front of the school.
Virtual Farmers Market by Roots Rising – support local and eat healthy by getting fresh produce delivered. If you receive SNAP you are eligible for free delivery and $30.00 a week of free local food. To order and learn more click here: https://www.rootsrising.org/virtualfarmersmarket
Williamstown Farmers Market – support local farmers. To order and learn more click here.
ROOTS Teen Center has meals available for pick-up by appointment. Contact Paula Buxbaum, Executive Director, at 413.663.0250
Hoosac Valley Elementary School in Adams is now serving grab & go meals that are purchased from restaurants and free to families of the school district. Saturday, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
The P-EBT program provides additional food support for students who would have received free or reduced-price meals under the National School Lunch Program if not for the school closures from COVID-19. This inlcudes any student in a school that provides free meals to all students. Families will receive $5.70 per student per day for every day school is closed to buy food. Families receiving DTA benefits will receive their benefits on their existing EBT card. Families not currently receiving DTA benefits will be mailed a new P-EBT card. Using P-EBT benefits does not impact you or your child’s immigration status. The Public Charge rule does not apply to P-EBT benefits.
Berkshire Food Project Update!, North Adams – M-W-F Only from 11:30am-1:00pm. Meal distribution will be moving inside. Meals will still be take-out only, for home enjoyment. No rest room facility is available. Traffic will be one way, entering through the breezeway and exiting directly from the dining room onto Summer Street. Masks (properly worn so they cover your nose and mouth) are required to be in line outside and to enter the building. Masks are available if you don’t have one. Social distancing required. Only eight people will be allowed in the building at one time… each time a person leaves, another person will be able to enter. Contact berkshirefoodproject.org
The Al Nelson Friendship Center Food Pantry will be open on Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The pantry is returning to 45 Eagle Street, North Adams. Deliveries will be made on Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Contact 413.664.0123 or visit their website at www.friendshipfoodpantry.org or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Salvation Army Food Pantry, River Street, North Adams – Tuesday, 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Please use front door.
Williamstown Food Pantry at Saint Patrick and Raphael Parish, 53 Southworth Street – Wednesday, 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
The Community Bible Church Food Pantry, 160 Bridges Road, Williamstown. Contact Phyllis Babcock 413.663.6094
Meal Site Distribution:
First Baptist Church, North Adams – Saturday, 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Grab & Go meals
Adams Council on Aging – Monday through Friday, Grab & Go congregate meals – must call ahead 413. 743.8333
Cheshire Council on Aging – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Grab & Go congregate meals – must call ahead 413.743.9719
Meals on Wheels (Elder Services) – Monday through Friday, call ahead 413.499.0524
Child Care of the Berkshires staff have returned to the office as of June 15th. Child care programs continue to work towards opening in the coming weeks. CCB’s building is closed to the public at this time. Follow CCB’s Facebook page for updates. The Family Center; a program of CCB, can provide children’s clothing sizes 0-10, diapers or formula through contactless pick up. Please contact the Family Center office by calling 413.664.4821 to arrange pick up.
Diapers – call to coordinate appointment for pickup. North County: Berkshire Diaper Project 413.446.5038, New Direction Women Center, 98 Church Hill, North Adams 413.346.4291, Al Nelson Friendship Food Pantry, 70 Holden St., North Adams, 413.664.0123, Northern Berkshire Community Coalition, 61 Main St., North Adams 413.663.7588
The Northern Berkshire Community Coalition is open by appointment only, Monday thru Friday from 9:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m. They can be reached at 413.663.7588. All nbCC events and group programs have been temporarily suspended. For a listing of services please visit www.nbccoaltion.org.
Our 510 North Street & North Adams WIC sites are currently closed until further notice, but we are serving our Participants over the phone. If you already have an upcoming appointment, we will call you in the near future to help you and to load your benefits onto your WIC Card. If you do not have a scheduled appointment or if you have questions, please call our Pittsfield office at 413.447.3495 – if we are unable to answer, please leave a voicemail. We will call you back as soon as possible and apologize for the delay.
MassHealth has expanded eligibility and coverage in response to COVID19. See https://www.mass.gov/topics/masshealth for more information.
Berkshire County Regional Housing: www.bcrha.com BCRHA’s contact number is 413.443.7138. People can call the triage line at ext. 229 or use our names directory.
Neighbor to Neighbor Fund grant program. http://www.berkshiretaconic.org/bReceivebNonprofitsIndividuals/SearchApplyforGrants/NeighbortoNeighborN2N
DTA Assistance Line: 877.382.2363
Berkshire Community Action Council: 413.445.4503
Department of Unemployment Assistance: 877.626.6800, 617.626.6338
*Unemployment has waived the waiting period https://www.mass.gov/unemployment-insurance-ui-online