COVID-19 Resources for Human Services Providers

HSC works closely with our government partners to connect human services organizations with information and access related to disaster preparedness. We will work hard during this period to provide you with up-to-date resources for human service providers from reliable sources.

Please note the situation is changing rapidly, and guidance is frequently updated.

Please make sure you reach out to the agencies with which you are contracted for the most up-to-date information and guidance! Please check the NYC DOHMH’s website and the New York State Health Department’s website for updated information as well. If you are on Twitter, you can follow @nycMayorsOffice and @nycHealthy for the latest updates. FEMA’s disaster assistance page can be found here.

Finally, it is important that we separate facts from fear, and guard against stigma and racism. There are a lot of social media posts and news reports that are not rooted in science and are offensive, demeaning, and racist. If you or someone you know is a victim of or witness to an act of racism or bias, please call 311 and ask for Human Rights to report this act of hate.


HSC is asking providers to complete a survey to collect information about the condition and unmet needs of the human services sector in New York City during this state of emergency, so that we can better support organizations and the people they serve.


We know that the sector is struggling to find personal protective equipment (PPE) for human services workers supporting communities at the frontlines of this pandemic.

HSC has been asked to assess the demand for PPE in the social services sector, so that we can better articulate the unmet needs of the sector for government and other official sources.
We ask you to please TAKE THE SURVEY at your earliest convenience so that we can better advocate to get you and your staff the supplies you need.

CovidWatcher is a research tool built by the Columbia University Medical School with the support of SIPA. It will only be effective if we can get people from everywhere in New York City to participate. By mobilizing “Citizen Scientists” to fill out these anonymous surveys via website or mobile app, we can help our researchers create important tools, such as maps of COVID-19 hot spots.

Hotlines & Contacts

• To report cases of COVID-19: Call 311.

• DOHMH’s NYC Healthcare Provider Access Line: Call 866-692-3641 if you are a healthcare provider with medical questions.

• New York State’s Dept. of Health’s toll-free COVID-19 hotline: 1-888-364-3065

• Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH): Call 1-800-985-5990 and text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 for crisis counseling and support for anyone in the U.S. experiencing distress or other behavioral health concerns related to any natural or human-caused disaster, including public health emergencies.

• NYS’s Free Mental Health Hotline for Individuals Needing Support: 1-844-863-9314

•  Reporting Racism Related to COVID-19: If you or someone you know is a victim of or witness to an act of racism or bias, please call 311 and ask for Human Rights to report this act of hate.

• Contact Your County’s Health Department: Visit this link to find your county’s contact information.

If you encounter instances of fraud related to COVID-19, please report them by calling 311 and to the BBB by clicking HERE.


We have been notified that organizations can order cleaning supplies and medical supplies in bulk from the NYS Preferred Source Program’s website. Soaps and sanitizers can be found here. General cleaning supplies can be found here.

The City of New York and its partners are committed to providing resources to those affected by COVID-19 crisis. donateNYC, a program of NYC Department of Sanitation, has resources for individuals, businesses, schools, and agencies to give and receive donated items.

FAQs for Human Services Providers

HSC is hosting regular calls with human serviced providers in New York. Based on those calls we are compiling a list of questions and answers, which we will be updating frequently. If you have questions that are not answered in the current document, please email them to [email protected] and we will do our best to get an answer for you in an updated version.

We are hosting more calls for human services providers Friday (4/3), Monday (4/6), Wednesday (4/8), and Friday (4/10) at 8 AM. Email [email protected] for the call in information.

CLICK HERE to view the current FAQs.

Last updated: 4/8/20 at 3:30 PM.

HSC Resources

• Emergency Plan Template for NonprofitsHSC has designed an Emergency Plan template to help organizations prepare for both disasters and other emergencies.  It includes guidance for preparedness, emergency action, continuity of operations, and sustaining the plan.

• HSAlert – HSAlert is HSC’s Emergency Communications system, designed especially for decision makers at nonprofit organizations.  In the event of a disaster with significant community impact, it will share information that will help organizations make the best possible decisions, including contracting issues, service delivery options, volunteer management, and more.

Free COOP Training for Nonprofits – HSC experts will be leading a two-day webinar training for human services providers to create Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) for their organizations. This training is aimed at nonprofit leadership, and participants MUST attend both training sessions (April 7th and April 20th from 9 AM – 12 PM).


A Dialogue with Foundation Leaders about Philanthropy’s Response, April 9th at 3:00 PM – As the public sector works furiously to contain the health crisis and the resulting economic slow down of COVID-19, many advocates are calling on foundations for bold and decisive action of their own. Join Nonprofit Quarterly as they host this conversation with foundation leaders to get common questions answered about the relationships between nonprofits and funders during this turbulent time.

Federal Coronavirus Relief Bills: What Do They Mean for Nonprofits? – The networks of the National Council of Nonprofits hosted a national presentation to help all in the charitable community understand the various provisions of the two new federal stimulus laws and what they mean for nonprofits. The video of the webinar HERE.

FEMA Public Assistance Briefings – The Office of Disaster Recovery at the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services is continuing to hold virtual Applicant Briefings to discuss federal funding from FEMA that may be available under the COVID-19 major disaster declaration. This 1-hour training will help participants understand how to properly contract during emergency or exigent circumstances when using federal funds.

Click the date to register: April 8th at 6:00 PM; April 9th at 1:00 PM; April 10th at 9:00 AM; April 13th at 1:00 PM; April 14th at 9:00 AM; April 15th at 6:00 PM; April 16th at 1:00 PM; April 17th at 9:00 AM.

• COVID-19 Guidance: Procurements Under Grants During Periods of Emergency or Exigency, April 8th through April 10th – FEMA is offering a one-hour training to help participants understand how to properly contract during emergency or exigent circumstances when using federal funds. There is one more opportunity to take this training.

Click the date to register: April 10th at 9:30 AM.

A Conversation with Movement Leaders on COVID-19, April 14th at 3:00 PM –In this webinar, hosted by Building Movement Project and SolidarityIs, learn about the challenges that non-profit organizations, from social service providers to movement-based groups, are facing during the Coronavirus pandemic. We will learn about the impact of the current climate on community members, on organizational staff and programs, and on the possibilities for the future.

Free COOP Training for Nonprofits, April 20th – HSC experts will be leading a two-day webinar training for human services providers to create Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) for their organizations. This training is aimed at nonprofit leadership. You can watch the pre-training video by clicking here.

Please also download the following worksheets as part of the training. Please note, the files will start downloading when you click:

1.) Worksheet A – Impacts
2.) Worksheet B – Planning Team
3.) Worksheet C – Readiness Self-Evaluation
4.) Worksheet D – Emergency Action Plan Components

Peer Support

We know that COVID-19 is putting nonprofit leaders in a challenging position. That’s why we are keeping a list of resources that can help you get the support and information you need, as well as a space to share best practices for the unique problems this virus is presenting.

We also urge you to review SeaChange Capital Partners’s resource, Tough Times Call for Tough Action: A Decision Framework for Nonprofit Leaders and Boards.

Executive Director Roundtable:

During this time of great uncertainty and change, the Human Services Council Peer Executive Director’s group offers a virtual space for social service leaders to learn from one another and offer support while dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and a volatile economy.
Join us on Mondays from 4:30-5:30 to gain a fresh perspective on how other Executive Directors are dealing with current challenges and learn different approaches as EDs grapple with how best to lead.
Our next roundtable call will be held on Monday, April 13th at 4:30 PM. Register HERE. Call in information will be sent out on registered Executive Directors on Monday, prior to the call.

Q&A for Human Services Leaders:

HSC is gathering best practices from human services leaders in NYC. Here are open questions our members have posed. Please share with us how you are approaching the following situations at [email protected] and we will post the answers below anonymously.

Please write PEER SUPPORT in the subject line of your email when you write.

OPEN QUESTIONS (submitted answers are written in red):

1.) Are executives going to work in person? We know many can work from home, but want to report with their executive teams in solidarity with case managers. However, many are worried about risking their executive teams’ health by forcing them to do that. What are others doing?

          All staff are working remotely with the exception of our supportive and emergency             housing staff. Executives are working from home.

2.) For staff who cannot work remotely:

  1. Are executives requiring the staff use PTO?


  1. Are executives allowing non-essential workers to come in because they need a paycheck?
  2. Are executives continuing to pay full salaries, even for non-essentials who have no work to do?

          Yes, but we are doing everything possible to assign work to all staff so that they can             work remotely.

General Leadership Support Guidance:

Important information from BDO about tax-free qualified disaster payments to employees in connection with COVID-19.

How To Facilitate Effective Virtual Meetings

Coronavirus Advice for Nonprofit Leaders

10 Tips for a Better Crisis Communications Strategy

Nonprofit Resources for Remote Work During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Understanding the Videoconferencing Tools Available to Your Nonprofit

Essential Workforce Guidance:

Guidance for Determining Who is Considered Essential Workforce in NYS

Regional Enrichment Center webpage

Regional Enrichment Center overview

Regional Enrichment Center FAQs for Families (March 20th)

The List

Last updated: April 8, 2020 @ 5:00 PM
PLEASE NOTE: we have moved the list to THIS LINK to make this page easier to navigate.
**If you are interested in hiring a disaster preparedness consultant, please reach out to [email protected] to get connected to a professional.**

Advocacy Opportunities

HSC engages in policy advocacy to ensure the human services sector is heard in government spaces. During the COVID-19 outbreak we will continue to push for our members to be included in conversations around community health and resilience. Providers are on the frontlines of this response and need to have their concerns and expertise heard and their contracts paid.

**Opportunities to Engage:**

As Federal reps adjust the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program, we must fight to ensure nonprofits are supported! HSC is asking you to call Senator Schumer, Senator Gillibrand, and your Reps TODAY and ask them to support the human services sector. Click here for our call script.

Call, email, and Tweet at Congress to call for more support for the disability community using the hashtag #WeAreEssential. They need to know why these issues are important and why people with disabilities should NOT be left behind in the next relief package. You can use this tool to help craft and send your message.

SIGN ON LETTER – Stand in Solidarity in Response to Anti-Asian COVID-19 Related Discrimination from the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families

Organizational SIGN ON – from Nonprofit New York’s Letter to Government Officials from New York City’s Nonprofit Sector in Response to COVID-19

SIGN ON LETTER to Congress to Join the SAVE for All Campaign – asking for Medicaid, Medicare, the Affordable Care Act, SNAP, SSI, housing, child care, and so many other vital programs to be protected. Full statement can be found here.

**Here are some of the advocacy initiatives we are engaged in and/or monitoring related to COVID-19 + Resources to Better Understand Legislation:**

Congress and COVID-19: What Passed and What Comes Next – PowerPoint Slides from the Coalition on Human Needs reviewing the CARES Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act: What Nonprofit Employers Need to Know – an article to help guide nonprofit employers understand the FFCRA.

Coalition Letter to the NYC Administration Regarding Essential Needs of the Human Services Sector in Response to COVID-19 – includes major asks to protect the human services sector and communities we serve.

HSC’s Memo on New York State’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic and Community-Based Organizations – includes our three major asks related to paid sick leave for the state.

FPWA’s response and concerns related to the Federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act legislation, which passed over the weekend – includes flags to consider, fiscal policy analysis, and ways to take action. Visit the link to find an easy way to reach legislators and sample language to include in your ask.

Why Nonprofits Must Be Included in a COVID-19 Relief and Economic Stimulus Package – a sign on letter to Congress.