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Talbot County perseveres as health crisis continues

EASTON — Health officials say perseverance is key for Talbot County as the number of COVID-19 cases in Maryland continues to rise, with one new case reported locally.

“Perseverance is defined as doing something despite difficulty,” Director of Emergency Services Clay Stamp said. “We are 20 days into the activation with no end in sight. It’s important that we keep our spirits high and look toward brighter days as we continue to work through this health crisis.”

Emergency Operations team members are supporting Talbot County’s health and medical capabilities, human services, and public safety, as well as businesses and non-profits.

“We as a community must pace ourselves and invest in our individual welfare while being helpful to others,” Stamp added. “Although this may become challenging as we press forward, help is available."

Talbot County Council President Corey Pack praised Talbot County’s efforts to address the health and economic issues.

“I love seeing the pictures of the work our partners are doing to meet the needs of this community,” he said. “I continue to be amazed by the sense of commitment in this community and the helping hands we extend to our neighbors.”

Maryland may see a peak in cases within the next two to three weeks, according to Talbot County Health Officer Dr. Fredia Wadley, but she echoed the need to persevere.

“People seem to be settling in and learning how to be at home,” she said. “It’s not easy, but we will get through it, day by day, in a safe way.”

Key Points for April 1

  • Recognizing the emotional challenges associated with limited movement under the Governor’s order, efforts are underway, in partnership with mental health professionals, to share resource information and best practices for self-help.
  • Maryland has 325 new cases of COVID-19 with a total of 1,985. The number of deaths rose from 18 to 31 in the past 24 hours.
  • A new 15-minute test from Abbott Laboratories for COVID-19 is on the horizon for Maryland and Talbot County.
  • A mobile testing site located at Chesapeake College has tested 140 patients and will continue to operate as long as supplies are available. Patients must have orders from a healthcare provider.
  • Approved childcare providers around the county continue to shelter the children of essential employees.
  • A bevy of volunteers helped restaurateur Chris Agharabi gave away 20,000 pounds of produce in St. Michaels on Tuesday, feeding 341 households and 1,291 individuals.
  • Organizations throughout the county continue to feed our seniors, children, and others in need.

Child Sheltering for Essential Workers

Many parents have done a great job finding alternative childcare and we appreciate their efforts. We prefer to keep children separated when possible. Talbot County has additional capacity for children 6 weeks to 12 years of age for parents that have been unable to find child care and must work out of the home. The services are from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The following are eligible to call and inquire about child care if they have no other options. They will need a letter from their place of work stating that they are essential and working out of the home and need child care.

  • Staff of hospitals – professional and support staff
  • Staff of EMS and 911 center
  • Department of Health and Department of Social Services
  • Staff of Detention Center
  • Law enforcement officers/firemen
  • Support staff of Board of Education involved in deliveries and other services due to COVID19
  • Any Talbot government worker that has been deemed unable to work from home and must work at office/site
  • Registered nurses and CNAs of nursing homes
  • Staff of ambulatory health care providers offices
  • Pharmacists
  • Mental health providers
  • Staff of Banks

Parents working at one of the above may email to inquire about services and how to enroll their child talbotkids@ymcachesapeake.org

After getting a letter from your employer stating your eligibility and enrolling your child for this service, you must use the email address above to notify us by 4:30 p.m. the day prior to your child needing services if you are not bringing your child in every day for care or if you are not bringing your child on a regular basis for established days of the week. We cannot staff appropriately unless we have notice the prior day that your child will be in our care.

Meal Distribution

New St. John's United Methodist Church, 9123 Tilghman Island Rd, Wittman, MD will be holding a Pop-up Food Pantry every Friday, starting this Friday 4/3/20 from 10am-12pm. The church also maintains an unmanned food pantry outside that offers non-perishables 24/7 to families in need.

Talbot County Library

Library Offers LIVE Story Time on Facebook for Preschoolers Beginning this coming Tuesday, April 7, at 10:00 a.m., and continuing every Tuesday at 10:00 a.m. thereafter, the Talbot County Free Library will take to Facebook to offer a live Story Time program for preschoolers (birth – 5 years of age). Children’s Librarian Laura Powell will read stories, lead group sing-alongs, and generally having a good time making sure our community’s little ones remain entertained and engaged during this difficult period in all of our lives. Parents can find the library’s live Story Time at: www.facebook.com/Talbot-County-Free-Library-130124829867/

Talbot County Public Schools

We will be distributing iPads to elementary students at their schools on Thursday, April 2 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Friday, April 3 from 8:00 a.m. to noon. TCPS recognizes that not all of our families have access to reliable internet connectivity, so we are also planning for how we can best meet the needs of all students.

Teachers have reached out to families to determine whether or not they have internet access. Learning activity packets will be mailed to students who currently do not have internet access, and therefore would not be able to utilize an iPad or laptop for distance learning.

TCPS Technology has established Helpdesk hours for any student requiring assistance or repair for a laptop or iPad.

  • Helpdesk locations: SMES and EHS in the front lobby.
  • Helpdesk Days/Hours: Tuesdays and Fridays 9AM- 3PM (Empezando el martes, 7 de abril)
  • Drop off/Pickup: Plastic bags will be provided for devices being dropped off. Parents and students will remain in their cars.
  • Email Access: Send emails to helpdesk@talbotschools.org to ask questions online, appointments will be encouraged.
  • Disinfecting: Techs will wipe down devices upon receipt and prior to return.

Food Distribution

The next TCPS meal distribution for children ages 2-18 will be PICK UP ONLY on Friday, April 3 from 9 a.m. - 11 a.m.

  • Chapel District Elementary
  • Easton Middle
  • Easton Elementary-Dobson
  • St. Michaels Middle High
  • Tilghman Elementary
  • White Marsh Elementary

The Friday package will include breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack for Friday and Monday along with the CarePacks weekend food bag. “I continue to marvel at the number of committed staff and volunteers who make this all happen amid this pandemic!” said Dr. Kelly Griffith, Superintendent.

Mental Health Hotlines

Eastern Shore Crisis Help Line — 888-407-8018. Phone counselors at the Eastern Shore Crisis Response and Resource Helpline work 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist with individuals who are in need of mental health resources.

Mid-Shore Council on Family Violence — 1-800-927-4673. Available 24/7/365. Victims can also contact our hotline through our Website and from our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram Accounts. Emergency Shelter for victims, their children and pets is available. You can still get a protective order, and we can help you remotely. https://mscfv.org/

For All Seasons Sexual Assault and Mental Health Crisis hotlines — English Hotline: 1.800.310.7273 or 410.820.5600 Spanish Hotline: 410.829.6143

Where to Find More Information

Resources for Marylanders and employees during COVID-19

SBDC Webinar - Topics: EIDL and CARES (PPP) COVID 19 Loans

Monday 4/6/2020, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM (EDT)

Space is Limited ~ You Must Register: https://mdsbdc.ecenterdirect.com/events/16175

Please RSVP with a valid email. After registering, you will receive a Zoom Meeting link to join online, or you can join via the dial-in number. This webinar will be recorded and shared, and if space fills up, additional dates will be added.

Daily SBA Conference Call – Updates (M-F) provided and you can ask questions.

3:00 p.m., Call 202-765-1264, Conf Call ID# 827-299-626

5:30 p.m., Call 202-765-1264, Conf Call ID# 310-688-488

EIDL Application Help – Daily 10:30 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. On the call, an SBA agent will walk you through how to fill out the EIDL form. Have all your necessary documents ready. Zoom Meeting # 6794772946

Paycheck Protection Program Loan (PPPL) FAQ - 

SBA COVID-19 Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources

Main Maryland Business Information Site for COVID 19 updates and resources - https://govstatus.egov.com/md-coronavirus-business