Family and Children First Councils getting $1 million grant to provide more technological services

Family and Children First Councils getting $1 million grant to provide more technological services
Posted at 9:43 AM, Jun 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-18 20:10:58-04

COLUMBUS, Ohio — In Ohio, some of our most vulnerable neighbors rely on programs from the state and local governments. Family and Children First Councils are seeing some of the biggest need. Now, they're getting a $1 million grant to provide more services.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced the grant at a press conference Tuesday. He says routines for many of the children who are served by Ohio’s FCFCs have been changed by COVID-19 and it's been devastating for them. The grant aims to address that issue.

FCFCs help some of Ohio's most vulnerable children who oftentimes need services from many different agencies for things like developmental disabilities, child welfare, juvenile justice, and behavioral health.

Right before the pandemic started, officials planned to use $1.5 million from the state’s operating budget for grants and in-person training for the FCFCs. However, Gov. DeWine says with those changes in routine due to the pandemic, kids who don’t have access to technology and the internet have especially been affected as services moved online.

Now some of that money has been re-purposed to help councils buy technological devices like tablets, web cameras, and wireless hot spots and ensure that kids can connect to the services they need.

“Some of these youth were left without a connection, without a connection to their doctors and their needed therapies. For others, such as those in foster care and those in residential settings, the pandemic separated them from their families and their loved ones,” Gov. DeWine said. “These grant resources will help local Family and Children First Councils ensure that our most vulnerable children can continue to connect to the services that they very much need.”

Any family with a child or young adult up to the age of 21 are eligible for service coordination through their local FCFC.

Jade Jarvis is a reporter at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Reopening Ohio
Gov. Mike DeWine and the State of Ohio have established a plan to begin reopening Ohio businesses starting May 1. Below is a timeline of the businesses allowed to reopen.

May 1: Medical care – non-essential surgeries and procedures that do not require an overnight stay will be allowed beginning May 1.
May 4: Manufacturing, distribution and construction businesses that were ordered to cease activities may reopen on May 4, as well as general office environments.
May 12: Retail establishments and facilities will be allowed to reopen on May 12.
May 15: Salons, barbershops, day spas, tanning facilities, massage parlors, tattoo parlors and piercing businesses. Restaurants will be allowed to serve patrons on outdoor patios. More details here.
May 21: Restaurants and bars will be allowed to reopen for dine-in service. Read more here. Campgrounds will be allowed to reopen. Read more here.
May 22: Horse racing will be allowed to resume, with no spectators. Casinos and Racinos are not included in the reopening. Read more here.
May 26: Gyms, fitness centers, regulated pools, recreation centers and studios will be allowed to reopen, with new requirements. Non-contact and limited-contact sports leagues, such as golf, baseball and tennis will be allowed to resume. BMVs across Ohio will reopen, but government officials encourage citizens to utilize the BMVs online services when possible. Read more here.
May 31: Day care centers will be able to reopen in Ohio. Read more about the plan to reopen day cares here. Day camps and summer camps will also be allowed to operate. Details on that here.

While these announced reopenings encompass the majority of the businesses, agencies and events closed and canceled by the state's orders, the governor has not yet made an annoucements on when K-12 schools in the state will reopen, nor when places of public amusement, such as theme parks, gambling businesses, skating rinks, movie theaters, and others will be allowed to reopen. See a full list of indoor and outdoor places that remain closed here.

Click here for more details on the state's "Responsible RestartOhio" plan.