WHEDco's Response to COVID-19
WHEDco remains committed to supporting our South Bronx community during and certainly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis. 

Following the City’s guidance and in an effort to support the health and wellbeing of the individuals and families we serve, our staff, and our overall community, we have made the difficult decision to close temporarily our Early Childhood Discovery Center, Afterschool Programs, and the Bronx Music Heritage Center. We have also reduced in-person interactions with clients participating in our programs. Instead, we have transitioned to providing services to meet clients' needs through other means.

Mental Health Counseling & Case Management

Aware of the strain that this public health and economic crisis is having on the families we serve, our licensed social workers, case managers, and educators continue to provide a variety of support services, including:

  • Close communication with parents of our pre-school program to better understand and meet their needs, while exploring ways to institute remote learning for 3- and 4-year olds in our program;
  • Our school-based social workers continue to work with students and their families, and liaise with the schools’ administration to ensure that our families’ needs are being met; and
  • Our mental health counselors continue to support their clients through regular phone counseling sessions.

Home-Based Childcare Provider Services

We continue to offer support to parents and home-based childcare providers in our network in the following ways:

  • Making childcare referrals to parents, including those who work in the essential services;
  • Granting providers access to lesson plans and other resources to facilitate teaching and learning;
  • Encouraging providers in our network to plan for remote learning to continue to support children’s development, and to effectively transition to remote learning if they are no longer providing in-home services to children;
  • Reviewing and processing provider claims for the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP);
  • Processing enrollments for license-exempt caregivers; and 
  • Conducting unannounced in-person investigation visits to childcare providers when a child welfare concern is reported.

Small Business Support

Because we have already begun seeing the negative economic impact of this health emergency on the local landscape, we are continuing to provide services to small business owners, including those in our commercial corridors, as well as the community members who rely on them by:

  • Enhancing remote access to Legal Services for small businesses;
  • Instituting a monthly job listing via email for potential jobseekers within the Jerome Avenue Area;
  • Gathering information from funders, community partners and other stakeholders about resources to help community members and small businesses affected by COVID-19; and
  • Leveraging social media and other online platforms to share resources, hold events online and deliver trainings to empower jobseekers, community members, and entrepreneurs.

If an existing or new program participant is urgently in need of emergency family support services, they may contact us at (718)839-1100 or (718)839-1133.

If you would like to learn more about the ways in which you could support our work at this critical time, please reach out to us via email at mleverich@whedco.org or by calling (718)839-1157.
About WHEDco: For more than 25 years, WHEDco has been a leader in creating thriving neighborhoods in the South Bronx. In addition to building beautifully-designed Green, Affordable Homes that serve as a foundation for family stability, WHEDco creates life-changing opportunities for local residents of every age through our research-driven Early Childhood and Youth Education initiatives, which set kids on a path to college; Small Business Development programs, which nurture entrepreneurship and address community needs; Family Support and Counseling services, which connect families to the critical resources they need to succeed; and Arts and Culture programming, which showcases the borough's musical legacy and supports a new generation of artists. Learn more at whedco.org.