Illustration by Hugo Hinojosa
In the wake of COVID-19, the community is banding together to cope with the necessary transitions everyone is suddenly facing. All over El Paso, individuals, community organizations and local government programs have begun to do their part in aiding the El Paso community.
Here are a variety of resources that the community can use to stay healthy and safe.
The University of Texas at El Paso’s (UTEP) financial aid office released an email stating that any students receiving financial aid for the 2019 Fall semester and 2020 Spring semester may be eligible for financial funding of a new computer, hot spot or tablet in order to access online classes. All requests should be sent to [email protected], including a student ID and phone number.
The UTEP Department of Technology Support is offering a limited number of mobile hotspots available for checkout to help with the application of learning, teaching and working remotely. Inquiries for availability may be sent to [email protected].
Esperanto Development announced that they will be offering full-service support and extended stay in six El Paso hotels for evicted UTEP students in need of temporary lodging. Participating hotels include Hotel Indigo, Comfort Inn & Suites, Comfort Suites, Best Western PLUS, Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham and TownPlace Suites by Marriott. Director of Marketing and Sales Marianne Rosas may be reached via email at [email protected] or by phone at 915–920-8060.
EPISD and YISD
The El Paso Independent School District (EPISD) and the Ysleta Independent School District (YISD) have taken initiative during the pandemic by offering free pickup meals to students at various locations in El Paso.
EPISD has promoted Spectrum, the telecommunications company, to help students without internet gain access by offering free installation of modems with a two-month subscription included. The only payment needed is the modem rental fee.
El Pasoans Fighting Hunger (EPFH), a nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting hunger in El Paso, released an announcement on March 20 regarding their goal to transition their mobile pantry program into a drive through model to create a “low touch experience.” EPFH announced a schedule of food distribution taking place at the times of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Monday through Friday.
El Paso County Community Services Department offers access to its Senior Nutrition Program, a meal preparation service for senior citizens in the El Paso area. The service provides individuals with both warm and chilled, nutritionist-curated meals that are delivered to homes and senior centers. They may be contacted at epcounty.com or by phone at 915–546-8167.
In response to the virus, The El Paso Del Norte Community Foundation has established the El Paso COVID-19 Response Fund. Their website features locations and appropriate items to donate to each corresponding location. To seek general assistance, visit pdnfoundation.org.
The County of El Paso general Assistance Fund at epcounty.com provides a comprehensive list of requirements necessary to qualify for emergency rent, mortgage or utility payment along with an application. At Project Bravo projectbravo.org/utility-assistance, individuals can also enlist for housing assistance.
During a time where many are finding themselves needing medical attention but are experiencing financial constraints, The Texas Association of community Health Centers have information on outreach and allows you to search for low-income community health centers that will see uninsured patients. For further information visit tachc.org.
Sasha Minjarez and Sven Kline may be reached at email@example.com