Updated: 12:00 p.m. March 26, 2020

Need Help During COVID-19?

Community Action is fulfilling our mission during COVID-19. We’ve made many changes to keep clients, staff and community safe.

Community Action contacts and service changes: We are providing services, but all in-person services have been suspended at all locations until further notice. Our East County Resource Center is remaining open with limited walk-up services. We have added remote services options. There are many new services available for the first time to people of low-to-moderate income. See below for program-by-program updates. For more information, please call:

How We Can Help

Where do I start? I need to find out what types of help are available for me and/or my family. 

Resource Center & general services inquires, 360 416-7585:We are here for you by phone. Our Lobby is currently CLOSED and we are not able to offer any in-person assistance.

The Resource Center is currently providing information, referral and coaching on what programs you MAY qualify for at Community Action, with other agencies, or new state and federal resources.

We are also providing  limited emergency vouchers, by PHONE ONLY for food, hygiene products OR gasoline.  For more information please call 360 416-7585 or email resourcecenter@communityactionskagit.org

  • Approved food/hygiene vouchers are accessible at the store the following day after 11am.  
  • Gas vouchers are accessible at the station approximately 1 hour after phone approval.
  • For all others, we are providing resource information as needed, connecting them to their case managers if they have one, or providing information on how to access services.

We are continuing to process “Check-Ins” for those currently on the Housing Interest Pool. Housing Intakes for the Coordinated Entry system for people experiencing homelessness are temporarily on hold.  

I’m currently in a Community Action housing program. What should I do?

Housing Services, 360 416-7585: Those receiving Housing Case Management should call their case manager instead of coming in for an appointment. Housing Case Managers can be reached by calling the main number 360-416-7585 and asking for a case manager by name.

I’m pregnant or have young children. What resources are available for me and my family?

WIC (Women, Infant & Children Program),  360-416-7595: The Mount Vernon WIC office is providing all services by phone including appointments. The average WIC food benefit is around $100 per family. For more information, call: 360 416-7595 or text 360 708-1804.

  • We are able to provide benefits to new clients. 
  • There is no Anacortes WIC office at this time, since Island Hospital needed the space. All Anacortes clients should call 360 416-7595 or text 360 708-1804. Appointments will be handled by phone.
  • Clients with new babies, please call for breastfeeding advice and support, or other needs.

Children’s Council of Skagit County has compiled a list of activities and resources for fun and to help inspire ideas for engagement and play!

How do I get help paying my bills? 

Energy Assistance, 360-428-1011: Our Energy Assistance Program is now scheduling appointments daily instead of the first Wednesday of the month. If you are not a Puget Sound Energy customer or have no way of applying online please call 360 428-1011 or email  energy@communityactionskagit.org to schedule your Energy Assistance appointment. If you already have an appointment scheduled, please do NOT come to the agency for scheduled appointments, but rather complete applications by phone at your scheduled appointment time. For more information, call: 360-428-1011.

Learn more about bill waivers, payment plans, and energy assistance. Community Action can help you plan ahead.

You may schedule an appointment online by visiting www.pse.com/help and clicking “Get Started”. If you already have an appointment scheduled, please do NOT come to the agency for scheduled appointments, but rather complete applications by phone at your scheduled appointment time. 

Great news for struggling families and individuals who have service! Eligibility for low-income assistance has broadened to include households whose income is up to 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. That means a family of four could have earned $50,000 last year and qualify for $25 to $500 in assistance. The average help per household in Skagit County is $400-$500. Call 360 428-1011 to get help paying your energy bills through Community Action. 

Governor Inslee’s Ban on Evictions: Governor Inslee has prohibited landlords from taking any of the following actions against tenants:

  • Serving a tenant with a notice to pay rent or vacate their home, or
  • Serving a tenant with a notice to terminate their tenancy when they are a month-to month tenant, or
  • Filing an eviction lawsuit against a tenant for the nonpayment of rent.
  • If your landlord does any of those things and you need legal help, you can call:
  • You can also apply online at: https://nwjustice.org/get-legal-help

WA State Changes Sick Leave Benefits: Information from Employment Security Department on how to access sick leave benefits. 

Financial Resources for Washington State Residents: Trouble paying rent, credit cards or other bills? Want to know about short term loans? The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions has developed a list of financial resources for Washington consumers impacted by the Coronavirus. 

Food: I don’t have enough to eat. What are my options?

The Concrete Community Center is providing take-out meals weekdays from 11:45-12:45 pm for seniors, non-school age children and low income individuals. Donations are encouraged, but not required for all adults participating in the meal program.  

Address: 45821 Railroad St, Concrete, WA 98237

The list of Skagit County Food Banks can be found here: https://skagitcrc.org/food-banks.php. Information is changing quickly and we will do our best to keep the website as up to date as possible.

Meals on Wheels is available to individuals meeting the criteria listed below. For more information, please call Skagit County Public Health at 360-416-1500.

  • Individual must be 60 years of age or older, AND
  • Individual must be home-bound and unable to prepare meals for themselves because of limited physical activity; physiological or mental impairment; or lack the knowledge or skills to select and prepare nourishing and well-balanced meals.

 The average WIC food benefit is around $100 per family. The Mount Vernon WIC office is providing all services by phone including appointments. For more information, call: 360 416-7595 or text 360 708-1804.

  • We are able to provide benefits to new clients. 
  • There is no Anacortes WIC office at this time, since Island Hospital needed the space. All Anacortes clients should call 360 416-7595 or text 360 708-1804. Appointments will be handled by phone.

Skagit Food Distribution Center: The Skagit Food Distribution Center continues to be an important link to make sure enough nutritious food is available for everyone in Skagit County. The centralized distribution hub receives food shipments from large-scale emergency food providers such as Food Lifeline and Northwest Harvest and local farmers, and coordinates efforts to bring more nutritious food into the county for the 15 food banks and meal programs that feed hungry families. The FDC and our partner food banks are following state guidance regarding COVID-19: https://agr.wa.gov/services/food-access/fa-covid-19

I’m a veteran, or a veteran’s family. What help can I get?

Community Action’s Skagit Vets Connect, 360 416-7585: Skagit Vets Connect is currently providing limited services, by PHONE ONLY. Services Include:

  • Veteran Affairs disability claims, healthcare enrollment and all other VA benefits inquiries. Please call 360 416-7585.
  • Veterans Assistance Fund: Eligible veterans may apply for emergency vouchers for food/hygiene products and gasoline.
    • Approved food/hygiene vouchers are accessible at the store the following day after 11AM.
    • Gas vouchers are accessible at the station approximately 1 hour after phone approval.
  • Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH): Please call 206-518-1593.
  • Eligible Veterans experiencing homelessness. Please call 360 416-7585.

I’m a low-income senior or person with a disability, or I know one. What help is available?

Senior & Disabled Services, 360 610-0809 For more information email robertm@communityactionskagit.org or call 360-610-0809.

  • No Home Visits
  • No unessential medical transportation
  • No unnecessary direct contact
  • Transportation to essential medical appointments (contingent to volunteer availability)
  • Pick-up and doorstep delivery of prepaid grocery and prescription orders
  • Firewood deliveries to qualifying seniors
  • Yardwork
  • Telephone Well-being Checks for seniors
Skagit County Meals on Wheels, 360-416-1500: The Meals on Wheels program is available to individuals meeting the following criteria. For more information, please call Skagit County Public Health at 360-416-1500.
  • Individual must be 60 years of age or older, AND
  • Individual must be home-bound and unable to prepare meals for themselves because of limited physical activity; physiological or mental impairment; or lack the knowledge or skills to select and prepare nourishing and well-balanced meals.

Mount Vernon Manor, 360-428-1206: Those residing at the Mount Vernon Manor will need to communicate with Mary Laureano by phone only. She will be at the office taking calls on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8am – 2pm and can be reached at: 360-428-1206. When not at the office, Mary can be reached by cell for limited assistance on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at: 360-391-9815

  • The Food Bank at the Mount Vernon Manor is temporarily suspended. Individuals in need of food assistance can call Mary to discuss options.

I live in rural East Skagit County. What help is available near me?

Community Action’s East County Resource Center, 360 416-1733: The East County Resource Center is open and providing critical need services to individuals one person at a time. Critical need resources include: emergency food, personal hygiene items (limited to supply on hand), propane and gas vouchers. For more information contact the office.

Instead of our daily hot meal program, the Concrete Community Meal Program will offer take-out lunch services beginning Thursday, March 12. Active participants of the program may pick up a take-out lunch 11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m., Monday through Friday, from the main entrance located at 45821 Railroad Street, Concrete, WA 98237. Donations are encouraged, but not required for all adults participating in the meal program.

The following East County programs have been cancelled or modified until further notice:

  • AARP Tax Aide services suspended
  • Annual Seed Swap suspended
  • Community Closet operations suspended
  • Congregate Meal Program modified
  • Department of Licensing/ Concrete Licencing is closed to the public 
  • DSHS in person appointments suspended
  • DVSAS in person appointments suspended
  • Legal Clinic in Concrete at the ECRC
  • Senior and Disabled Person’s Property Tax Exemption Program suspended
  • Upper Skagit Library programs & services suspended

I’m currently homeless or about to become homeless. What should I do? How do I follow the “Stay at Home” order?

Community Action’s Housing Interest Pool, 360 416-7585: We can provide information and referral to all resources available at this time. Unfortunately, resources are limited. We are continuing to process “Check-Ins” for those currently on the Housing Interest Pool. Housing Intakes for the Coordinated Entry system for people experiencing homelessness are temporarily on hold.

Community Action’s Street Outreach Program, 360-770-3480: The Street Outreach program is focusing on providing essentials to people on the streets: tents/tarps/sleeping bags as supplies last; information on accessing food; information on reducing the spread of germs; assistance with requesting motel vouchers. Those in need of the Outreach program’s assistance should call 360-770-3480. If our team is with another client or in transit, they will not be able to answer the phone – please leave a message, or better yet text if you are able.

Community Action’s Motel Vouchers for People Experiencing Homelessness, 360 899-6825: The Motel Voucher Program is continuing to take names and contact information for its wait-list. Folks hoping for a motel voucher should leave their contact information; as we have information about their request we will get in touch with them. Those seeking a motel voucher can call 360 899-6825 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. To be clear, this program is not meant to shelter homeless individuals who are under Isolation or Quarantine instructions due to COVID-19. Skagit Public Health is working on a separate program to meet that need and we are awaiting an update on its status.

  • Homeless families with children and pregnant women can be served through with Winter Family Motel Voucher Program. Vouchers will be issued to eligible families for a one-week stay. Families can be considered for extension at the end of their week-long stay by returning to Community Action. Vouchers in this program will continue to be issued until March 31, 2020, or until funds run out.
  • Homeless people aged 60 and over, people with serious underlying health conditions, and pregnant women can be served through the COVID-19 Motel Voucher Program. Vouchers will be issued to eligible households for a two-week stay. Households can be considered for an extension at the end of their two-week stay. Vouchers in this program will continue to be issued until May 31, 2020 or until funds run out.

“Stay at Home” options for homeless: 

Housing Justice Project: Eviction clinics usually held on Fridays at 9 a.m. at Skagit County Courthouse are suspended until further notice.

Healthcare: What do I do if I need insurance or healthcare?

The Healthcare Authority will be providing assistance with Apple Health by phone. Please call 1-800-562-3022 for assistance. 

Washington Healthplanfinder special enrollment period between now and April 8.

What do I do if I need help with my mental health or other behavioral health services?

The North Sound Behavioral Health Ombuds Program, 360 503-9472The North Sound Behavioral Health Ombuds Program provides self-directed advocacy for individuals receiving crisis services and/or State and Medicaid funded behavioral health services in Island, San Juan, Skagit, Snohomish and Whatcom Counties. All individuals are welcome utilize the Ombuds program for a consultation.

Staff is following the Public Health recommendations for social distancing. Voicemails will be checked throughout the day to ensure that Ombuds can continue to serve and keep our community members healthy. If you are in need of immediate assistance, please call 360 503-9472 to speak to a Ombuds staff member. ”

Transportation: I need to get to appointments. What help can I get?

Skagit Transit Fare Free: In accordance with the guidance to practice Social Distancing, Skagit Transit will go FARE FREE during the COVID-19 emergency. This will allow riders and drivers to both follow the Social Distancing recommended by the CDC and other public health authorities.

I’ve been laid off. How do I find a job?

For job search assistance, including resume writing, cover letter, job application, and interviewing skills please contact 360-899-7482 or 360-899-7475 for more information.

I received a letter about ABAWD (Able Bodied Adults without Dependents). What do I do?

The roll out of ABAWD has been delayed at this time. For more information, go to: https://www.dshs.wa.gov/esa-1

I’ve been taking classes with Community Action. What’s going on with those?

Community Action’s Adult Education & Financial Workshops: Currently all community-based GED and English Language Education classes are suspended until further notice. Current students will be contacted by their instructors for distance learning opportunities. All financial education, budgeting, Job Club, Renter’s Education and other workshops are suspended until further notice. 

Where can I find more information about COVID-19?

Find yourself wondering about something you saw on Twitter?  Did a client/partner recently ask about something they heard?  Public Health now has a page addressing myths and rumors roaming about the community. 

Washington Healthplanfinder special enrollment period between now and April 8.