COVID-19 Information and Resources

Youth sitting down and chatting

The California Department of Social Services’ (CDSS) realizes that this continues to be a difficult time for everyone. We want to ensure that our Partners & Foster Youth have plenty of tools and resources to assist with navigating these difficult circumstances.

LGBTQ Resources

During these uncertain times, LGBTQ youth are facing unique challenges. According to a study done by The Trevor Project, rates of depression, anxiety and suicides within the LGBTQ community are increased due to a decrease in positive interactions, increase in negative interactions, economic strain, housing and employment concerns, and general uncertainty and worry about the future. Below are a number of resources that caseworkers may utilize to educate themselves and/or share with youth and families to help support LGBTQ youth:

  • COVID-19 & LGBTQ Clients: Key Considerations Tip Sheet
  • Gender Spectrum has online groups for LGBTQ young people (and parents/guardians)
  • Trans Lifeline is a trans-led organization that connects trans people to the community, support, and resources they need to survive and thrive. It also provides a peer support hotline for transgender youth
  • The Trevor Project provides LGBTQ youth access to counselors 24/7 via telephone, text, chat, and social media. They have a dedicated Suicide Prevention hotline for LGBTQ youth.
  • The California LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network has compiled a list of agencies and resources for the LGBTQ community and is hosting a webinar series for professionals who work with the LGBTQ community.
  • LGBT National Help Center offers a 24/7 hotline as well as dedicated chats for LGBT youth. They have increased the frequency of their youth chats during this COVID-19 crisis.
  • The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) includes a list if LGBTQ affirmative health-care providers, as well as information and links to several hotlines and mental health resources for the LGBTQ community.
  • Mind the Gap promotes the healthy development of gender-expansive, gender creative, and transgender children, youth, and their families by providing mental health services in the context of gender acceptance and gender diversity.

The Community Care Licensing Division has released a New Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Expression (SOGIE) Resource Guide for Children’s Residential Program Licensees and Caregivers which is available for viewing/downloading by clicking on the following link: Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Expression (SOGIE) Resource Guide

Education Resources

The California Department of Education (CDE) is monitoring the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and working closely with agency partners. This link provides Information and resources regarding coronavirus (COVID-19) and California's response.

Help for Students in Crisis
Resources curated by the CDE for addressing mental health and wellness while school sites are closed, including the following:

Child Trends
Resources for Supporting Children’s Emotional Well-being during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Please Pass the Love
A program hosting several regularly scheduled online social and educational gatherings (through Facebook Live, Zoom, and Slack) for children and youth in K-12th grade

A website developed by the Regents of the University of California with mental health exercises, self-interviewing prompts, self-care guidance, and coping skill development for high school-aged youth and transition-aged youth

Fun activities you and your family can do during COVID-19:

  • Take a virtual class. While gathering in a classroom might not be advisable right now, thanks to the power of the internet, classes of all kinds are still available. Learning something new and thinking critically are great ways to stave off cabin fever.
  • Start a craft project. Finding time for hobbies is often difficult due to the business of everyday life. Right now you might have the bandwidth to pick up a hobby, and why not look into starting a craft project?
  • Do puzzles. Another great way to put your brain to work is by doing a puzzle. Whether it's a traditional jigsaw or a book of Sudoku, puzzles are extremely stimulating.
  • Start an indoor garden. It might seem surprising but one of the most effective ways to practice self-care is to take care of something other than yourself. With that in mind, this might be the perfect opportunity to start an indoor garden.

Age Appropriate Online Activities You Can Do Without Leaving the Household

The following websites provide fun online activities that are accessible straight from your couch:

Virtual Tours

Here’s a list of few places travelers can tour — without having to leave the couch.


Additional Resources

Planned Parenthood

Staff at your local Planned Parenthood health center can talk with you and help you get the care you need. You can search for a health center or call 1-800-230-PLAN for care today.

Whether in person by virtual appointments or by phone, during these uncertain times Planned Parenthood can provide you with the health care you need. Some services are available by telehealth.

If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, help is available. The National Domestic Violence Hotline offers virtual support online and over the phone.

Additional Links to Information

All County Letters (ACL) and All County Information Notices (ACIN)

ACL 20-23 (March 13, 2020)
Child Welfare And Probation Visitation Contact, Non-Minor Dependents In College Dorms, Resource Family Approval And Disaster Plan Changes Due To The Statewide Outbreak Of Coronavirus (COVID-19)

ACL 20-25 (March 21, 2020)
Providing Optimal Child Welfare And Probation Services To Children And Families During Coronavirus (COVID-19) California State Of Emergency

ACL 20-28 (March 28, 2020)
Interim Guidance for Emergency Response Social Workers and Probation Officers During the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) California State of Emergency

ACL 20-33 (March 31, 2020)
Placement Preservation Guidance for County and Tribal Child Welfare Agencies, Probation Departments, and Children's Residential Care Providers in the Event a Child, Non-Minor Dependent, or Care Provider is Exposed to, Presents Symptoms of, or Tests Positive for COVID-19.

ACL 20-36 (April 1, 2020)
California Work Opportunity And Responsibility To Kids Program Guidance To Provide Outcomes-Based Incentives And Performance-Based Payments

ACL 20-39 (April 14, 2020)
Temporary Assistance For Needy Families (TANF) And California Work Opportunity And Responsibility To Kids (CalWorks) Time Limit Exemption For Recipients Living In Indian Country Where The Unemployment Level Of Adults Is 50 Percent Or Higher

ACL 20-42 (April 16, 2020)
Conducting Initial In-Home Supportive Services (Ihss) Assessments And Quality Assurance / Program Integrity (Qa/Pi) Activities During The Covid-19 Response

ACIN I-31-20 (April 8, 2020)
Documentation of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the Child Welfare Services / Case Management System (CWS/CMS)

ACIN I-29-20 (April 7, 2020)
Release Of Revised In-Home Supportive Services Provider Orientation Video And Supplemental Handouts