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South Portland Community Newsletter

Issue 280

This City of South Portland Community E-Newsletter includes information about Ciy sponsored events, projects and special announcements from South Portland's non-profit community.    Sign up if you would like to receive the newsletter directly to your inbox.
Having difficulty viewing the newsletter?  The newsletter and archives are posted on the City's website here.   Please report broken links to news@southportland.org.

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Emergency Regulations currently in effect in the City of South Portland:
  • Stay at Home or Place of Residence - All persons currently living within the City of South Portland are required to stay at home or at their place of residence unless performing an essential activity.
     
  • Use of all parks, beaches and outdoor recreation facilities owned and/or maintained by the City for outdoor activity is permitted; provided, however, that use of outdoor fitness equipment (e.g., pull up bars) and playground equipment (e.g., play systems, climbing equipment, swing sets, and slides) is prohibited due to the risk of increasing the spread of COVID-19.
     
  • Restriction on Visitors to Senior Care Facilities
     
  • Prohibition on Use of Reusable Bags at Retail Establishments
     
  • Prohibition on Short-Term Rentals through April 30 (with exceptions)
     
  • Self-Quarantine for All Out of State and Out of Country Visitors for a period of fourteen (14) days. 

For more information on the City's Emergency Regulations and preparations regarding COVID-19, as well as useful links and documents, please visit the coronavirus page our City website.

https://www.southportland.org/coronavirus-covid-19/

Effective March 14, 2020:  Main Library, Branch Library, Redbank Community Center and Community Center are closed until further notice.

Effective Monday, March 16, at 4:30 p.m., public access to all South Portland municipal facilities will be temporarily suspended through at least April 13.  Click here to learn more about how our departments can assist you.

The Transfer Facility is closed.
  Public Works will be offering curbside pickup of brush and leaves (leaves placed in biodegradable bags).  We are asking residents to call 207-232-9800 when the bags are ready to be picked up. 

No Passport appointments are being scheduled at this time.  Visit travel.state.gov for the latest information.   The City Clerk's Office and Finance Office will be closing at 4:30pm on Thursdays until further notice. 

 

To register to receive Emergency Notification Alerts related to your neighborhood, follow this link:  
https://www.southportland.org/departments/police-department/code-red/

Click Here for more information about SoPo To Go
The City recognizes that during this time, citizens may be looking for assistance or asking how they can assist others. The City would like the public to know that there are a number of established services and resources that are available. The intention of this page is to direct those who may be seeking guidance with available resources.

CITY RESOURCE ASSISTANCE LINE
(207) 347-4177
Monday-Friday 8:00am-4:30pm


FOR EMERGENCIES, PLEASE DIAL 9-1-1. 
For more information, visit: southportland.org/community
WAYS TO HELP

If you are looking to provide assistance, please give us a call at (207) 347-4177.   We will work to match you with organizations and resources.

Out of an abundance of caution for the safety of our residents, the City will not be acting to directly match volunteer "assistance providers" with volunteer "assistance seekers" at this time.   The City will be working to match people with agencies and resources who can assist, and to provide as a liaison for requests.


 

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Donations
The South Portland Food Cupboard operates entirely on donations.  If you can, please consider donating to ensure this community service is continued. 

Donations are received Monday-Friday from 7:30am until 12:00pm and they do ask you call ahead. A list of items the Cupboard needs can be found here.  

Monetary donations may also be made online by visiting the website here: http://southportlandfoodcupboard.org/

Donating blood continues to be in a need in Maine.  Please consider making a blood donation

 


 

Supporting Local Restaurants & Businesses
One way to support local businesses and restaurants that may be closed during this time is to purchase a gift card or gift certificate to be used at a later time.
 
A list of South Portland restaurants that remain open for take-out, curb-side pick-up and delivery are listed here (updated March 26, 2020).



Volunteering

Please visit www.maineresponds.org to register as a volunteer to provide services during a disaster or emergency situation.

Southern Maine Agency on Aging is continuing to operate its Meals on Wheels program.  If interested in volunteering, please contact them at https://www.smaaa.org/volunteer/newvolunteers.html

 

The Maine Council on Aging is creating a central place for information so that service providers of all kinds can more easily tap into local efforts to help older people during this crisis.  Click here to take a few minutes to let the Maine Council on Aging know if you have a community response program that is responding to the needs of older residents.  They are particularly interested in food, socialization, pharmacy pick-up and daily check-in programs.

 

If you have organized a volunteer program in the community, click here for guidance on how to make safe deliveries to vulnerable people during the Covid-19 outbreak.



South Portland Housing Authority is seeking volunteers.  Please reach out to Phil Smith at psmith@spha.net.

 


 

Providing Assistance

There are many things people can do as neighbors in a community, and some of the suggestions are shared below:


DOs

  • DO call your family, friends and neighbors to check in with them.  If you are able to, consider shopping for them and dropping off food or items for them, picking up their mail (if located elsewhere), or assisting with yard work or other needs they may have.
     
  • DO wash your hands, practice social distancing, and continue to follow the recommendations of the CDC.
     
  • DO refer people to agency support services if they need help.

 

DONTs

  • DON'T go door-to-door or visit people for check-ins.  (Opt to use the phone instead.)
     
  • DON'T panic. 
     
  • DON'T attend large gatherings.
     
  • DON'T "panic-buy".
     
  • DON'T go to work if you are sick.  (Call your doctor!)
     
  • DON'T flush anything other than waste and toilet paper!
    DON'T flush:
    • Baby wipes or cleaning wipes
    • Paper towels
    • Tissues
    • Dental Floss
    • Tampons and sanitary products
    • Cotton balls and swabs
    • Cat litter
    • Prescription drugs
    • Over-the-counter medicines
    • Cigarette butts

 


 

For More Information:

 

 

WAYS TO RECEIVE HELP
 

Please click here for a full list of Community Resources.

What are you looking for?

Food Resources - Pick Up Delivery
Pharmacy Drive Thru & Pick Up
Senior & High-Risk Shopping Hours in Stores
Transportation
Understanding Business Designation as "Essential" or "Non-Essential"
Unemployment/Economic Assistance
Online & Remote Resources
Curbside Leaf & Brush Pick-Up
General Information about COVID-19
Social Check-In Calls
Request Assistance

 


 

Food Resources

Children (ages 0-19)
South Portland School Department will be feeding children while school is not in session. Starting March 17, bag breakfasts and bag lunches will be available for pick-up from 11:00am until 1:00pm Monday-Friday in the parking lots of the sites listed below.  Look for the School Bus to pick-up meals!   If you need home delivery, please contact Kathy Germani, Assistant Superintendent at germanka@spsd.org  or 871-0555.  This program is open to all children ages 0-19.  For more information, visit https://www.spsd.org/district/covid19  Each day the school provides lunch and breakfast for the next day with double meals on Fridays to help out for the weekend.  So far the school's amazing nutritional services crew has distributed about 7,500 meals!

Free Meals for Students rev.3.30.20 (1).jpg

 

Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Maine
All BGC are offering "grab and go" dinner meals from 4:00pm-5:00pm.  These meals are available to all children under age 18 (you do not have to be a club participant.) 

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Many South Portland Restaurants are offering curbside take-out, pick-up and delivery options.  For a list (updated March 26, 2020), click here.


 

South Portland Food Cupboard
The South Portland Food Cupboard is continuing to operate.  As of March 15, the Food Cupboard will be providing food in a "Drive Thru" process.    Recipients will simply provide their name and ID number from their car and their groceries will be loaded by our volunteers.  Please refer to the update page.

Food Distribution
Days and Times

Thursdays (except Holidays)
8:30 am – 11:00 am

The *First Wednesday of the Month
5:00 – 7:00 pm
*for Recipients who work or go to school,
making it impossible to come Thursday

***Until Further Notice, No Tuesday Distribution***

Location and Mailing Address:
130 Thadeus Street
South Portland, ME 04106
207.874.0379
http://southportlandfoodcupboard.org/
 

 

Wayside Mobile Food Pantry 
The Wayside Mobile Food Pantry will be operating their mobile food pantry on 4/1 and 4/22 at Redbank Village at 586 Westbrook’s Street at 2:00pm and are  handing out prepackaged boxes food. 
 

Good Shepherd Food Bank - Food Pantries

Info on food pantries status.  Click on the county column to sort by county: https://www.gsfb.org/covid-19-partner-agency-updates/  


 

Southern Maine Agency on Aging (Meals on Wheels)

Meals on Wheels is continuing to operate and meals are being delivered to existing clients.  To sign up, please visit this link:  https://www.smaaa.org/wellness/meals.html or call 1-800-427-7411.

You may qualify for our Meals on Wheels program if you are:

  • Age 60 or older
  • Primarily homebound or getting out with difficulty
  • Unable to regularly prepare nutritious meals
  • Able to accept meals during the delivery time frame
  • Agree to an in-home nutritional assessment (An in-home nutritional assessment will be completed within 9 business days of the first delivery to determine full eligibility.

 

Simply Delivered for ME is an alternative program through SMAAA for those who do not quality for Meals on Wheels. It is a service available to anyone regardless of age (proceeds help support SMAAA and Meals on Wheels). They deliver frozen meals and have reduced their rates to $5 per meal while things are shut down during the outbreak. They do accept all forms of payment including checks and SNAP. https://www.smaaa.org/wellness/simply-delivered.html


Grocery & Pharmacy Pick-Up & Delivery Programs

* You may be able to designate someone to pick-up a prescription for you.  Call the pharmacy to see what they require.  Most will require you notify them of who will be picking up your prescription.  The person picking up your prescription will need to know your name, date of birth, and may need to show ID. 

 


 

Senior Shopping HoursSeniors Shopping.jpg

Additionally, Hannaford is adding a dedicated time when customers who are 60 or over and individuals identified as being identified by the CDC as at high risk may shop, providing them with the opportunity to have more social distance while in the store. These special hours for our 60+ customers are 6 a.m. to 7 a.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of each week. 


Transportation

The South Portland Bus Service remains in operation with limited service.  Effective March 19, 2020, bus service is free.  Ridership is limited to those who require bus service for essential travel.  Please be mindful not to use the bus if you feel ill or are exhibiting symptoms of illness. 

 

 


Understanding Business Designation as "Essential" or "Non-Essential"

We’ve received several calls from residents of South Portland or individuals who work in South Portland wanting to know if their business is defined as "essential" or "non-essential" under the Governor's Executive Order.    Please refer to this chart.

The Governor's office has set up a number to assist with these questions: 1-800-872-3838 (Monday – Friday) or email business.answers@maine.gov.

 


 

 

Unemployment & Business Economic Assistance
For the time being, the Maine Department of Labor advises all individuals who are out of work either partially or totally to visit www.maine.gov/unemployment/ to file a claim.   Please visit https://www.maine.gov/labor/covid19/ for more information.
 

Telephone Number for New Claims & Weekly Certifications
• Toll-Free: 1-800-593-7660 (Customer service available Mon-Fri, 8:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.)
TTY/Relay for Deaf and hard of hearing: Maine relay 711

 

Maine small businesses can now access and apply for Economic Impact Disaster Loans at www.sba.gov/disaster. The SBA toll-free line has been established to answer questions at 1-800-659-2955. Furthermore, in collaboration with the Department of Economic and Community Development, the SBA and its Resource Partners: U.S. Small Business Administration, SCORE and Women Business Centers will be providing workshops to answer questions and to help small businesses with the loan application process.  For more information, click here.

Information on Business Financial Assistance

The City's Economic Development Department wants to alert South Portland’s businesses about a virtual Information and Q&A meeting that the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce is hosting with Congresswoman Chellie Pingree tomorrow morning - Thursday – April 2, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

Topics to be covered include financial assistance, loans, grants, etc. available through the latest Congressional relief package, the CARES Act.  This session is aimed at businesses with fewer than 500 employees. Please share with anyone who may be interested.  Here is the link to register:  https://bit.ly/2wGHUh4. Please share with anyone who you think might be interested in joining this virtual information and Q & A session.  If you have a question you would like answered please email it to Joe Marro at jmarro@portlandregion.com ahead of time. Once you have registered, you will receive a YouTube link to join the Zoom call at 10am on Thursday.

 


Online & Remote Resources
City buildings remain closed to the public, however, city departments are still operating and we can still assist you over the phone or via online.  Please call us at (207) 767-3201 or opt to take advantage of the many available online resources available 24/7. 

 


Leaf & Brush Pick Up
In light of the Transfer Station being closed, Public Works will be offering curbside pickup of brush and leaves (leaves in biodegradable bags).  We are asking residents to call when the bags are ready to be picked up. The number to call is 207-232-9800. 



 

Information about COVID-19
The Governor has established a 211 option for Mainers to get answers to questions about COVID-19 and resources available throughout the State at any time. This service is available by dialing 211 (or 1-866-811-5695), texting your ZIP code to 898-211, or emailing info@211maine.org.

 

Below are are several videos explaining general CDC information and specific State of Maine guidelines regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in these languages: 

The City of South Portland is continuing to update this page with information as it pertains to City operations:  {CCM:BASE_URL}/coronavirus-covid-19/


 

Social Check-Ins

 

The City has begun reaching out to self-identified seniors to begin social check-in calls.  The intention of these calls is NOT to offer wellness assessments, medical advice or information, but to ask how people are doing, and to make them aware of available resources, if needed. 

If you would like to receive a social check-in phone call, please call us at (207) 347-4177.   You do not have to be a senior citizen to qualify for a call.


Requesting Assistance

If you need assistance that hasn't been addressed here, please consider the following options:

  • If you are in an emergency situation, please dial 9-1-1.
  • If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19 or are showing symptoms of illness, please contact your Primary Care Provider.  At this time, doctor's offices are referring testing.

The City has established a "CITY RESOURCE ASSISTANCE LINE" for anyone who is requesting assistance - (207) 347-4177.  Some examples may include wanting to receive social check-in calls, requesting food pick-up and delivery by a member of city staff, requesting essential items, requesting childcare, and other needs as a result of COVID-19.  City staff will take your information and your request and work to match you with available resources.

If you're looking for something to do at home, why not take a few moments to complete some of our community surveys below? 

Thank you for your input! 
As part of a Marketing and Branding Planning effort that the City currently has underway, we are looking to get feedback from as many members of the community as possible. To help the City with this effort, we ask you to take a few moments to complete this questionnaire. As you consider these questions, we encourage you to get input from other people in your organization, field, and any other contacts you have within the community who might be willing to offer their insights / feedback to enhance this collaborative process. When reviewing the questions on this form, feel free to respond to the questions that are of highest priority to you. Although responses to all questions are greatly appreciated, we want to be mindful of your time.
Click here for more information & the application for the Cumberland County Woodstove Changeout Program
The City of South Portland Community Newsletter is published by the City of South Portland.  It is a compilation of the best available information at the time of publication.  Events may be subject to change without notice in the time between publication of this e-newsletter and the actual event.  To send information to be considered for inclusion into this newsletter, send to news@southportland.org.
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