Resources for Bigs, Littles & Families during social distancing

Our young people and our whole community are facing a lot of disruption right now. It’s important that our youth know they are cared for by many people! Social distancing can lead to social isolation. We want people to be safe AND feel connected with others so we’re encouraging matches to stay in touch.

Resources for our Youth & Families During Social Distancing!

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CONNECTING

Our young people and our whole community are facing a lot of disruption right now. It’s important that our youth know they are cared for by many people! Social distancing can lead to social isolation. We want people to be safe AND feel connected with others so we’re encouraging matches to stay in touch!

Community-Based, School-Based, and Workplace matches are encouraged to stay in contact via phone, text, video, or by sending notes and/or cards. This is an important time to stay in communication with people we care about! Please contact your Match Support Specialist for any questions or additional ideas/support.

  • *School-Based and Workplace matches please contact your Match Support Specialist to initiate the required steps for contact with your Little & their Parent/Guardian. 

ACTIVITIES LITTLES CAN DO AT HOME

  1. Read at least 30 minutes a day!
  2. Online Learning Platforms (Free/Low Cost Internet Resource Below if Needed)
  3. Drawing Activities
  4. Making Drawing Fun!
  5. Online Education Resources (Mostly free!)
  6. Engineering education specific ideas
  7. Giant List of activity ideas generated by lots of community members! 
  8. Library Online Resources: 
  9. Easy Science Experiments using common household supplies
  10. 12 Famous Museums that offer virtual tours!
  11. Pacific Science Center – Curiosity at Home kit
  12. 101+ Ideas to keep Kids busy

FOOD RESOURCES WHILE SCHOOLS ARE CLOSED

  • To find additional food resources in your neighborhood go to: https://northeastiowafoodbank.org
  • Each school district’s website will have additional resources, please visit your local school district website for more information.

FINANCIAL & OTHER RESOURCES FOR FAMILIES

We’re asking Bigs not to do crowd-sourcing fundraising, like GoFundMe pages for specific families. Bigs, if there is a specific need for your Little’s family (like food, or other emergency needs) please take a look at this list and talk to your Match Support Specialist directly about needs and desires to help.

  • United Way agencies across Iowa are proud to partner with the Iowa Department of Public Health and be the COVID-19 Hotline. Call 211 or visit https://www.211iowa.org/ for questions, concerns or more information about Coronavirus/COVID-19.
  • All other counties please call 211 or visit https://www.211iowa.org/ for more resources including info on health insurance & medical expenses, internet, unemployment benefits & more.

SELF-CARE DURING STRESSFUL TIMES – for Littles AND adults!

  • Exercise. Go for a walk outside – bundle up if you have to.
  • Have a dance party with your family!
  • Listen to music – or make music if that’s your jam.
  • Color. Even adults can color.
  • Call a friend and catch up!
  • Get good rest! Keep a solid routine, even with school and work changes.
  • Drink lots of water!
  • If you feel worried or stressed, talk to someone about your feelings. Don’t keep it bottled up. 
    • You can also write about your feelings! Or use art to express feelings too.
  • United Healthcare has a free resource for anyone needing emotional support due to COVID-19

INFORMATION ABOUT COVID-19

How do I talk to my Little and/or child about COVID-19?

Littles & Bigs Connecting and Coping

  • Check up on how the day is going.
    • Ask them to name 3 great things about themselves.
    • Remind them you are there for them even though you cannot see each other in person.
  • Phone Apps (if applicable)
    • Words with Friends
    • Draw Something
    • YAHTZEE
    • Powerboard Racing 3D
    • Mini Golf Match-up
  • Book Resources
    • Wilma Jean the Worry Machine
    • Wemberley Worried
    • When My Worries Get Too Big
    • David and the Worry Beast
    • Breathe Like a Bear
    • Listening to My Body
    • How Big are your Worries Little Bear
    • The Worry Box
    • The Invisible String
    • I am Love: A Book of Compassion
  • Audible
    • Offering hundreds of titles available for free during the COVID-19 pandemic while schools are closed, anyone can listen to a vast selection of its titles. Simply visit stories.audible.com from any web browser to get started. No log-ins, credit card or passwords needed.

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*Thank you to Big Sister and School Counselor, Ayla Larson, of BBBS of Central Iowa for assisting with compiling this list of ways for Littles and Bigs to connect and cope.*

**We’d like to also acknowledge BBBSNEIA staff for their contribution to this resource list.**

                                           We are #BiggerTogether!!