Opportunity for Child Care Subsidy Assistance for Families

Please share this information from DHHS Office of Child and Family Services’ (OCFS) with your school communities.

Are you a family in need of support for the cost of child care?  The Office of Child and Family Services’ (OCFS), based in Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), administers the Child Care Subsidy Program (CCSP) which helps eligible families to pay for child care so they can work, go to school or participate in a job training program.

Eligible families must meet the income guidelines and at least one of the following activities: work, school, and/or job training program. The CCSP is available for children ages 6 weeks to 13 years, as well as for children with identified special needs or under court supervision up to age 19. For more information on CCSP please visit: https://www.maine.gov/dhhs/ocfs/ec/occhs/step.htm

Through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriation Act (CRRSA) Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG), CCSP will be waiving copayments from 03/27/21 through 03/25/22 or until funding is no longer available.  CCSP will be reimbursing providers for the full amount of care based on individual award letters. For more information on OCFS’s CRRSA strategies please read the following: https://www.maine.gov/dhhs/ocfs/documents/covid-19/CRRSA%20Funding%20Strategies.pdf

For more information, please contact your county specialist at: Financial Resources Specialist

Emergency Rental Assistance Program Available for Eligible Families

The Maine Department of Education asks that our school and district partners please share this important information with families that may need housing assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

MaineHousing and Maine’s Community Action Agencies are accepting applications for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. This program helps pay rent and utility costs for eligible renters affected by COVID-19. Maine’s Community Action Agencies are running this program in communities across Maine.

Program information and the application link can be found here: mainehousing.org/covidrent

Marketing Materials:
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For further information or questions, please reach out to MaineHousing at (800) 452-4668 or (207) 626-4600.

MYAN to Host Virtual Youth Leadership Conference April 15th and 16th

MYAN (Maine Youth Action Network) is hosting its very first virtual youth leadership conference on April 15th and 16th.

The virtual conference is designed by and for middle school and high school aged young people, as well as recent graduates and college-aged youth. Unlike the in-person conferences from years past, this event is free to attend!

Happening across two days – April 15th and 16th – the virtual conference flows between community spaces, interactive workshops, and featured keynotes from storied youth leaders here in the state of Maine. Main conference events last from 10:00am to 2:30pm each day.

The interactive workshops and keynote speakers will connect you to other young leaders and to topics that support your passions, advocacy, leadership skills and interests!

View full Workshop Descriptions on MYAN’s blog, or download the conference agenda and workshop descriptions using these links:

The conference is also a place for young people to meet like-minded youth and start important conversations. Some community focused workshops will focus on building skills or connections to work already happening that might support young people in their lives such as:

Storytelling through music and art, community driven research, spoken word & poetry, self-care strategies, facilitation skills, public speaking, outdoor adventure, Maine youth organizing efforts and much more!

How to register

To register for the conference, click the button below and fill out the registration form! Registration will close on April 6, 2021. MYAN will send you details for how to log in to the conference after you register. The first 50 registrants will be mailed a free conference tee shirt!

Register here

Virtual conference platform

Whova will be used to host the conference virtually! It’s a secure virtual conference platform you’ll use to access workshops and keynotes. More info about how to access the platform will be emailed to all registrants. You can either access Whova from an internet browser or download the app on Apple and Android devices. From there you’ll be able to sign up for specific workshops, make your own profile, access the schedule, and start connecting with other participants!

For further information or questions, contact MYAN: https://www.myan.org/contact-us/

 

MEDIA RELEASE: Emergency Broadband Benefit Program Available to Eligible Families in April

The FCC recently adopted a Report and Order that established the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, a $3.2 billion federal initiative to help lower the cost of high-speed internet for eligible households during the on-going COVID-19 pandemic.

Benefits of the program include:

  • Up to $50/month discount for broadband services;
  • Up to $75/month discount for broadband services for households on Tribal lands; and
  • A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet purchased through a participating provider.
  • The Emergency Broadband Benefit is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per eligible household.

A household is eligible if one member of the household:

  • Qualifies for the Lifeline program, including those who are on Medicaid or receive SNAP benefits;
  • Receives benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision, or did so in the 2019- 2020 school year;
  • Experienced a substantial loss of income since February 29, 2020, and the household had a total income in 2020 below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers;
  • Received a Federal Pell Grant in the current award year; or
  • Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income or COVID-19 program.
The FCC expects the Emergency Broadband Benefit program to be open to eligible households before the end of April, 2021. Please check the FCC’s website, www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit, regularly for the latest information. Once up and running, eligible households will be able to enroll through participating broadband providers or directly with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC).

Many types of broadband providers can qualify to provide service in this program. The FCC is currently setting up the systems needed for providers to participate. Contact information for the providers participating in the program will be posted on USAC’s website: https://www.usac.org/.

For more information, the Report and Order along with the rules governing this program can be found here: https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-adopts-report-and-order-emergency-broadband-benefit-program-0.

Job Corps Virtual Information Sessions Available on 3/11 and 3/25

Have you ever wondered what Job Corps was all about? Well, here’s your chance to find out!

Job Corps is a free Career Technical Training program that is federally funded  through the Department of Labor for 16-24 year-olds (the upper age limit may be waived for a student with a verifiable disability).  Some of the Career Technical Trainings available are welding, carpentry, culinary arts, CNA, and many more.  Students can also earn their HS diploma and stay on center, free of charge, while they work towards completion of their trade.  The two centers in Maine are in Bangor (Penobscot Job Corps) and Limestone (Loring Job Corps).

Information sessions hosted by Maine’s Job Corps office will be held on Thursday, March 11th, 2021 at 3:00PM or Thursday, March 25th, 2021 at 3:00PM on Google Meets. Registration is required at which time link and logon information for the session will be sent via email.

For questions or to register email Ross Chicoine at Chicoine.Ross@jobcorps.org.