Category Archives: COVID-19

SPARK Projects in Bourbon County Are Varied

Bourbon County, KS

Recently a whole slate of Bourbon County businesses, organizations, school districts, churches and other categories of entities received grants to help with COVID-19 expenses.

The Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) taskforce plan is to lead Kansas forward in recovery from the far-reaching effects of COVID-19, according to its’ website,https://covid.ks.gov/spark-recovery-office/

SPARK is responsible for the statewide distribution of the U.S. Coronavirus Relief Fund.

The total amount of grants disbursed in Bourbon County:
$2,835,212.86

The following received Bourbon County SPARK Funds on October 21, 2020, according to Bourbon County Economic Director Jody Hoener.

Listed below are the names of the businesses, the category they are under and the amount received from SPARK.

4 State Sanitation, Small Business, $3,500.00
5 Corners Mini Mart, Small Business, $4,250.00

Ascension Via Christi Pittsburg Inc., Health Care, $203,150.00

Baja Management Corp, Collaborative, $450,000.00
Bartelsmeyer Jewelry, Small Business, $3,750.00
Beacon Incorporated, Small Business, $1,500.00
Bids and Dibs, Small Business, $4,000.00
BN Hunting, Small Business, $1,250.00
Bourbon County, Preapproved, $263,684.65
Bourbon County 4-H Council, Small Business, $2,000.00
Bourbon County District Court, Preapproved, $3,457.00
Bourbon County Information Technology Economic Development, $51,250.00
Bourbon County Kansas Health Care, $91,000.00

Care to Share Cancer Support, Small Business, $500.00
Cheney Witt Chapel, Inc., Small Business, $2,500.00
Chicken Shak, Small Business, $2,500.00
City of Bronson Economic Development, $111.32
City of Bronson Health Care, $1,200.00
City of Fort Scott Economic Development, $142,000.00
City of Fort Scott Economic Development, $9,974.78
City of Uniontown Economic Development, $39,041.00
City of Uniontown Economic Development, $225.33
Clayton’s Inc DBA Union Station Economic Development, $20,000.00
Clifton’s Chiropractic LLC, Small Business, $2,000.00
Community Christian Church, Small Business, $4,500.00
Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas, Inc,. Health Care, $19,985.00
Compass Counseling Services, Small Business, $1,000.00
Crawford Dental LLC, Health Care, $15,000.00
Crossroads Camping & Cabins/Yellow Brick Road Invest., Small Business $2,000.00

Dairy Queen, Small Business, $5,000.00
Diamonds in the Marketplace Small Business $2,750.00

Findley Auto & Body, Small Business, $3,000.00
Fort Cinema, Small Business, $4,250.00
Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce, Small Business, $3,250.00
Fort Scott Broadcasting Co, Economic Development, $50,000.00
Fort Scott Christian Heights, Education, $4,199.00
Fort Scott Community Closet, Small Business,$2,000.00
Fort Scott Community College, Education, $287,760.78
Fort Scott Family Medicine, Health Care, $5,150.00
Fort Scott Hospitality Co., Small Business, $2,250.00
Fort Scott Motors LLC, Small Business, $3,250.00
Fort Scott Nazarene, Small Business ,$2,250.00
Fort Scott Presbyterian Village, Health Care, $84,520.00

HairBow Center, Small Business, $5,000.00
HB Salon, LLC Small Business $2,500.00
Hedgehog.Ink! Small Business $3,250.00
Holmtown Pub Small Business $5,000.00
Hot Wok Inc Small Business $4,500.00

I Am Rehab and Fitness Small Business $4,500.00
Imagination Station LLC Education $17,500.00

J&W Sport Shop Small Business $2,500.00
Jamie’s Beauty Shop Small Business $2,500.00

KANROCKS Recreation Small Business $5,000.00
Kenny Felt Photography Small Business $2,750.00
Khris & Karina LLC Small Business $1,000.00
Kings Way Inn Small Business $1,750.00
KW Cattle Company dba Reprologix Small Business $5,000.00

Lana’s Daycare Education $2,000.00
Leah’s Daycare Education $2,000.00
Liberty Theater Inc Small Business $4,500.00
Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes Small Business $5,000.00
Luther’s BBQ Small Business $5,000.00

Mayco Ace Hardware Small Business $4,750.00
Momentum Indoor Training Small Business $2,500.00
New Generation, Inc. Education $17,500.00
Niece Equipment Products of Kansas Inc. Small Business $5,000.00
Norvell Company, Inc. Small Business $5,000.00

O’Brien Cattle Co., Inc. Small Business $2,500.00
Opie’s Inc. Small Business $2,500.00

Papa Don’s Small Business $4,000.00
Peerless Products Economic Development $50,247.00
Pioneer Harvest Fiesta, Inc. Small Business $500.00
Ponderosa Farm Collaborative $10,000.00

Re:freshed Aesthetics Small Business $2,500.00
Re:new with Julie Small Business $2,500.00
Rejuvenate with Kayla Small Business $2,500.00
RH Ventures LLC Small Business $2,000.00
RII Concrete Small Business $5,000.00
RockBallet Small Business $2,500.00

Santana’s LLC Small Business $4,500.00
SASS Inc, Hillside Guest Home Health Care $12,600.00
Sawyer Automotive Small Business $1,500.00
SEK Multi-County Health Department Health Care $7,500.00
SEKAN Printing Company, Inc. Small Business $5,000.00
Sharky’s Pub & Grub Small Business $5,000.00
Sleep Inn and Suites – Fort Scott Small Business $5,000.00
Southeast Kansas Mental Health Center Health Care $122,458.00
Spoiled Brat Small Business $2,500.00
St Mary’s School Education $80,000.00
Structure Small Business $2,500.00
Sunbeam Christian Preschool Education $10,000.00

TFI Family Services Education $50,000.00
The After Affect Salon Small Business $2,500.00
The Boiler Room Brewhaus Small Business $3,250.00
The Christian Learning Center Foundation Education $8,199.00
Two Sisters Cleaning Service Small Business $2,250.00

Unified School District 234 Education $306,000.00
USD 235 Uniontown Collaborative $88,000.00
USD 235 Uniontown Education $102,000.00

Velocity Manufacturing Small Business $5,000.00

Wise Tax and Accounting Small Business $1,750.00

Total amount of grants:
$2,835,212.86

COVID-19 Infiltrates Moore-Few Care Center

 

Nevada Regional Medical Center (NRMC) has been supporting an investigation and response to an outbreak of COVID-19 at Moore-Few Care Center that began last week.

The first case was discovered through routine testing of the staff on Oct 20th. Since then 39 residents and 23 staff have tested positive. Family members of all residents have been contacted and close contacts identified and contacted as well.

The administration and staff of Moore-Few are working closely with federal and state health departments to contain the spread of the virus and are following all recommendations to protect every individual on the premises. Residents have been separated, with all COVID-19 positive cases moved to rooms in one wing of the building. Unless symptomatic, employees are being tested twice a week and residents are tested weekly. Visitation continues to be prohibited.

“This is a situation we take very seriously,” said Holly Bush, Chief Quality Officer at NRMC. “The health and well-being of our long-term care residents, and everyone in our health system, is our top priority. That is why we need everyone to follow the public health guidelines to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect the people in our community who are vulnerable to severe illness from the virus.”

###

About Nevada Regional Medical Center
Serving a six-county area since 1937, Nevada Regional Medical Center is a 71-bed acute, intensive and skilled care hospital. Nevada Regional Medical Center has earned recognition as a respected regional medical center for its comprehensive health care services, skilled and caring employees and state-of-the-art medical technology. Staff represent more than a dozen medical specialties, including family practice, women’s services, neurology, urology, psychiatry, orthopedics, wound care services, and general, vascular, thoracic and oncological surgery. Additionally, consultation clinics are held regularly by specialists in oncology, pulmonology, podiatry, ear, nose, and throat and cardiology.

Halloween Guidelines In A Pandemic

KS Dept. of Health and Environment Guidance for Celebrating Halloween, September 2020

This document outlines guidance and considerations for celebrating Halloween during the COVID-19 pandemic. As typical Halloween celebrations do not allow for minimizing contact with non-household members, it is important to plan early and identify safer alternatives. Refer also to any specific city or county guidance in your community which may be more restrictive than what is outlined below.

Halloween Activities Not Recommended

• Gatherings, events, or parties with non-household members
• Carnivals, festivals, live entertainment, and haunted house attractions
• Door to door trick or treating – It is very difficult to maintain proper social distancing on porches and at front doors, ensure everyone (trick or treaters and residents of homes being visited) are properly wearing face coverings, and because food sharing is risky.
• “Trunk or treating” – It is difficult to avoid crowding and sharing food at such events.
• Traveling to a rural fall festival that is not in your community if you live in an area with community spread of COVID-19.

Recommended

• Online parties or contests (e.g., costume contests, pumpkin carving)
• Car parades
o Drive by events or contests where individuals dress up or decorate vehicles and drive by judges that are appropriately physically distanced
o Drive through events where individuals remain in vehicles and drive through an area with Halloween displays
o Drive in events where individuals receive a treat bag (with commercially packaged, non-perishable treats) or take away item from an organizer while the participants remain in their vehicle
• Halloween movie nights at drive in theaters
• Halloween themed meals at outdoor restaurants, complying with restaurant protocol
• Halloween themed art installations at an outdoor museum, complying with museum protocol
• Dressing up homes and yards with Halloween themed decorations

Personal Protection Measures

Regardless of how you celebrate, there are important recommendations for how to keep yourself and your household members safe.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home and around others who are not part of your household.
• Avoid confined spaces, including indoor spaces that don’t allow for easy distancing of at least 6-feet between you and others.
• Practice physical distancing – place at least 6-feet between yourself and other people who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Clean frequently touched items regularly.

Safer Trick or Treating and “Trunk or Treating”
Although KDHE does not recommend trick or treating or “Trunk or Treat” events as ways to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make these choices for yourself or members of your household.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home.
o Incorporate face coverings into costumes.
o Face coverings should not be worn by children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing, and anyone who is otherwise unable to remove their cloth face covering without assistance.
• Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals while outside your home.
• Consider carrying sanitizing wipes to disinfect candy or other items accepted from homes. Or, sanitize items individually when you get home before consumption. Remember to also examine treats for choking hazards or tampering before eating them.
• Accept only commercially packaged, non-perishable items.
• Practice physical distancing.
o Always leave at least 6-feet of space between yourself and people not in your household.
o Do not crowd sidewalks, driveways, or porches.
o Wait until a porch or doorway is empty before approaching a home.
o Move aside on sidewalks and driveways to allow space between yourself and other trick or treaters.
o Keep a safe distance from cars – do not walk in the street.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, follow all guidelines above while also considering:
o Maintain at least 6-feet of distance between yourself and other attendees as you walk around.
o Wait for others to depart a car/trunk before approaching. Do not congregate at a car/trunk with other attendees unless they are members of your household.
Guidance for Homes Accepting Trick or Treaters
• When answering the door or coming into contact with trick or treaters, correctly wear a cloth face covering.

• Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds at regular intervals; hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be substituted if soap and water are not available.
• Regularly clean and sanitize frequently touched items such as door handles, door bells, and door knockers. Consider having sanitizing wipes by the door for quick access between trick or treaters.
• Distribute only commercially produced, non-perishable items to trick or treaters.
• Do not use “grab bowls”, where trick or treaters reach into a communal bowl to retrieve candy.
• Practice one-way trick or treating
o Consider spacing items 6-feet apart on your porch, in your yard or on a table in your driveway with a sign advising trick or treaters to “Take 1”. Watch from a safe distance and replenish items as needed.
o Alternatively, make individual goodie bags for trick or treaters to pick up as they walk by. If your home has a fence, consider hanging individual goodie bags on the fence for trick or treaters to take as they walk by.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, also consider:
o Participating cars should be parked at least 6-feet apart.
o Make individual goodie bags and place them in your trunk so they are not touching. Maintain a distance of at least 6-feet from other attendees and replenish bags or items as needed.
o Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals.
o Sanitize high-touch areas at regular intervals. Consider having sanitizing wipes on hand.
Halloween Parties
Although KDHE does not recommend hosting or attending parties as a way to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make this choice for yourself or members of your household.
• Remind potential guests who are sick or waiting on results of a COVID-19 test to stay home.
• Host activities with only people from your local area as much as possible.
• Correctly wear a cloth face covering around others who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Consider only hosting or attending parties hosted in large, outdoor spaces that allow for physical distancing of at least 6-feet between attendees. If an event must be hosted indoors, make sure the space is well-ventilated (for example, open windows and doors).
• Maintain at least 6-feet between yourself and people who are not members of your household, especially when cloth face coverings are removed for eating and drinking.

• When setting up tables and chairs, create individual seating areas of various sizes spaced 6-feet apart to be utilized by individual family or household units. Encourage guests to sit only with those who are members of their household, especially for eating and drinking when cloth face coverings will be removed.
• Avoid activities that require guests to be in close contact or to share items, such as games or food.
• Encourage guests to bring their own food and drinks.
• Limit people going in and out of areas where food is being prepared, such as kitchens or grills.
• Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces and any shared items between use when feasible.

General Halloween Health and Safety Tips

In addition to modifications to Halloween activities to reduce the spread of COVID-19, remember the following general Halloween health and safety tips to keep you and members of your household safe.
• Avoid trick or treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.
• Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.
• Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them.
• Hold a flashlight while trick or treating to help you see and others see you.
• Walk, don’t run, from house to house.
• Look both ways before crossing the street. Use crosswalks whenever possible.
• Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible. Avoid walking in streets and roadways. If there is no sidewalk, walk along the far edge of the road facing traffic in order to stay safe.
• Wear well-fitting costumes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.
• Eat only commercially produced, non-perishable treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.
• Do not enter homes unless you are with a trusted adult.
• Only visit well-lit homes.
• Never accept rides from strangers.
• Never walk near candles or luminaries. Wear flame-resistant costumes.

References
1. Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Guidance for Celebrating Halloween. Retrieved September 2020 from http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus/docs/community/GuidanceHalloween.pdf.
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Halloween Health and Safety Tips. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/family/halloween/index.htm.
3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Personal and Social Activities. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/personal-social-activities.html#gatherings.

4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Holiday Celebrations. Retrieved September 2020 from
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html.

Flags At Half Mast for COVID 19 Deaths in Kansas

Governor Kelly Directs Flags be Flown at Half-staff to Honor 1,007 Kansans Who Lost their Lives to COVID-19

TOPEKA – Kansas surpassed 1,000 Kansas deaths due to COVID-19. In honor of the lives lost and the families they left behind, Governor Laura Kelly has directed that flags be lowered to half-staff throughout the state effective immediately to sundown, Friday, October 30, 2020.

“It is with deep sadness that I announce the passing of 1,007 Kansans who lost their lives to COVID-19,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “One of the many terrible impacts of this virus has been that families are unable to hold in-person services to mourn the passing of their loved ones. Each one of these Kansans was someone’s child, parent, or grandparent. They were part of a community. Today, I’m directing that flags be lowered to half-staff, so that we may honor and remember them.”

To receive email alerts when the governor orders flags to half-staff, please visit https://governor.kansas.gov/newsroom/kansas-flag-honors.

City Of Bronson Receives SPARK Grant

Bronson City Hall. Submitted photo.

The City of Bronson received grant funds to better serve its’ community safely during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

In mid-October, City Clerk Ellen Harper received a SPARK Grant in the amount of $1,200 for providing help to safely serve the town, located in western Bourbon County.

The Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) program is charged with leading Kansas forward in recovery from the far-reaching effects of COVID-19, according to its’ website.https://covid.ks.gov/spark-recovery-office/

SPARK Committees are distributing money from the U.S. Coronavirus Relief Fund.

The City of Bronson will use it to provide masks, sanitizers and cleaning products to mitigate the spread of the virus at city hall.

“We put a shield up in our office for when we interact with customers,” Harper said.  “And we sanitize.”

In addition, the city is recommending wearing masks and social distancing as part of the plan.

“This is for employees, city council members, or anybody that comes in and wants to use it for council meetings,” Harper said.

As in the rest of America, the way meetings are organized, or if held at all, have changed.

Bronson has already cancelled its annual town-wide event, Bronson Day, because of the virus and will probably cancell the annual Christmas fundraiser as well, Harper said.

Resident Death at Hutchinson Correction Facility

 

TOPEKA, Kansas – A Hutchinson Correctional Facility resident who died Tuesday, Oct. 27 had tested positive for COVID-19. This is the seventh resident death related to COVID-19.

The resident tested positive for the virus on Oct. 13 and was transferred to the hospital on Oct. 16.  The resident’s family has asked that his name not be released. He was a 66-year old while male with underlying medical concerns that contributed to his condition.

 

The resident was serving an indeterminate life sentence for aggravated sodomy. He had been imprisoned with the Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) since August 1988.

 

The Hutchinson Correctional Facility is Kansas’ second-oldest prison and houses 1,884 men.  Formerly known as the Kansas State Industrial Reformatory, the facility has three buildings including the Central (all custody levels), East (low-medium custody) and South (minimum) units.

For current information on COVID-19 in Kansas, and to sign up for updates, go to the KDHE COVID-19 Resource Center at kdhe.ks.gov/coronavirus. For information on the KDOC’s response to COVID-19, visit https://www.doc.ks.gov/kdoc-coronavirus-updates.

CHC Offers Rapid COVID-19 Testing

Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas, Fort Scott..

Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas in Fort Scott now offers rapid testing for the COVID-19 virus for those with symptoms.

On October 9, 2020, the Bourbon County Law Enforcement Center announced there were 33 who tested positive for COVID-19 at the jail, the biggest spike in the county since the pandemic started in March 2020.

As of October 20, there have been 303 people who have tested positive for the virus in Bourbon County, according to the Southeast Kansas Multi-County Health Department.

To see the latest COVID-19 updates, click below:

Kansashttps://www.coronavirus.kdheks.gov/160/COVID-19-in-Kansas

 

“I can confirm we have finally received the test kits to now do rapid testing in Fort Scott for COVID-19,” Krista Postai, CHC/SEK CEO, said.  “Because of the limited supply, we have allocated these for those individuals with symptoms.”

Krista Postai. Submitted photo.

Because of the limited amount of tests, it is at the discretion of the health care provider and the availability of the test, according to a spokeswoman at CHC.

“We have standing orders to cover the testing,” Postai said.

COVID-19 testing takes about 20 minutes in total.

The test is done with nasal swabs.

The cost is $100 and covered by insurance and/or a government program for those with symptoms, Postai said.

 

“For those without symptoms, an alternative rapid test is available for $50 cash and is not covered by insurance,” she said. “However, if the test comes up positive we are required to send it off for confirmatory testing which costs another $100 cash and takes another couple of days.”

Small Business Development Center: In Bourbon County Nov. 2

Kansas Small Business Development Center Offers New Business Support Kiosk to Bourbon County Residents

PITTSBURG, Kan. – The Kansas Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will be launching their new Business Support Kiosk to provide no-cost consulting services to small businesses in the Bourbon County area.

The Kansas SBDC Business Support Kiosk will launch on November 2nd inside the Bourbon County Workforce and Entrepreneur Resource Center located at 17 N. Main in Fort Scott, Kansas. The Kiosk will have a mixture of in-person support and daily walk-in video conference support. Support available will include COVID-19 business programs, steps to starting a business, industry research, training seminars, and access to additional SBDC experts across the state.

We want to give current businesses the tools to build sustainable business models with the capital and resources needed,” said Jody Hoener, Bourbon County Economic Director. “The Kansas SBDC has a track record of supplying small businesses with industry reports, business planning templates, and resources needed for long term success.”

Hoener also stated that having the Kansas SBDC’s certified personnel is crucial for the community’s economy and small businesses moving forward.

It’s nice helping bring this enhanced service to my hometown,” said Dacia Clark, Assistant Director for the Kansas SBDC at Pittsburg State University. “We want to give special thanks to the City of Fort Scott and Bourbon County for their continued support of the Kansas SBDC program.”

About the Kansas SBDC: The Kansas Small Business Development Center at Pittsburg State University serves as the regional consulting resource for the small business owner. Whether it’s an existing business looking to boost sales or a start-up trying to get off the ground, we provide our customers with quality professional and personal care. Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the Kansas Department of Commerce, and Pittsburg State University, a majority of our services come at no cost to the local business. Learn more about the Kansas SBDC at http://www.pittstatesmallbusiness.com/.

 

All In for Kansas Kids 🌟 Weekly Update!

Update | October 24, 2020

Hello Early Childhood Partners,

New support is available for Kansas renters and landlords via the Kansas Eviction Protection Program. Find out more, including how to apply, in the email update below. And with Halloween one week away, please take a minute to share this Halloween COVID guidance from the Department of Health and Environment with your families to help them stay safe and have fun.

Stay safe and be well. 

NEW – Kansas Eviction Prevention Program!

Home has never been more important.

Our homes have always provided shelter, but in the midst of the COVID pandemic, home has become so much more. The economic impact of the pandemic has left many Kansans unemployed or underemployed, uncertain how they will pay rent. While moratoriums provide temporary protection from eviction, rent continues to accrue each month, leaving tenants unsure how they will pay arrears, and leaving landlords without monthly income to pay bills and manage maintenance and upkeep.

Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) has worked closely with the Kelly administration, the Office of Recovery, and the Department of Children and Families to create the Kansas Eviction Prevention Program (KEPP). KEPP is designed to decrease evictions and increase housing stability by assisting landlords and tenants experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID pandemic.

Through the KEPP program:

  • Landlords and tenants apply for up to $5000 per household to pay delinquent rental payments dating as far back as April 1, 2020.
  • Payments will be made directly to the landlord, who must agree not to evict the household for nonpayment of rent for the months of KEPP assistance received.
  • Landlords must also agree to waive any late fees accrued during the months for which assistance is received.

Follow the step-by-step application guide or visit the KEPP web page for more information!

Congratulations LaToya Mothershed – Early Childhood Champion!

Congratulations to LaToya Mothershed for receiving the Kansas Children’s Champion Award at the Region VII Head Start virtual conference this week!

LaToya is the first Head Start parent to be receive this award.

This is the most recent in a long line of early childhood accomplishments for Latoya that includes: parent leader, KSHA board president-elect, and keynote speaker. The entire early childhood system is better because of the investment and energy of this amazing, trailblazing woman. Latoya, we are grateful and appreciative of your generosity and commitment to the children and families of Kansas. What a great wrap up to Head Start Awareness Month!

Register by THIS FRIDAY for the Kindergarten Readiness Summit

The Kansas Kindergarten Readiness Transition Summit will expand and support the implementation of the Head Start – public school collaboration work! The goal is to bring together teams of school districts and Head Start programs from at least 10 school districts in Kansas. This collaboration will help to sustain and improve gains children make during Head Start through building strong, effective relationships between Head Start and receiving schools.

CARES Act Funding for Technology and Remote Learning
Still Available!

Remote Learning Support – CARES Act funding is available to support programs addressing the current need for alternative care and education for families adversely impacted by remote learning situations (schools in hybrid or remote learning modes).
Click HERE for more information and to apply.

Applications are now open with proposals accepted on a rolling basis. Grants must be awarded AND expended by December 30, 2020. Find out more information about all funding available through the CARES Act for early childhood by visiting http://allinforkansaskids.org/.

Technology for Families Program – CARES Act funding to support connectivity, equipment, and devices to support virtual access for families receiving home visiting services. If you partner with a state agency to deliver one of  seven home visiting models  – you are eligible!

Click HERE to apply before October 30th! 

If you have already received funding, and have enrolled new families with need since your initial award, you are eligible to submit an additional request. If you have any questions, technical assistance is available at tff-support@ku.edu

Grants and Consulting Help for Child Care Providers

Child Care Aware of Kansas is teaming up with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to offer Child Care Health Consultants (CCHC). These consultants are available to help child care programs analyze the results of a Self-Assessment and identify ways to reduce the spread of illnesses within the program. Participating child care programs may then be eligible for a health and safety grant. Check out the Child Care Health Consultation Pathway for an overview of the program.
Eligibility: Child care programs who are licensed by and in good standing with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) to participate in the Child Care Health Consultant Network.

To get started, follow these steps:

  • Step One: Child Care Programs are asked to complete, to the extent possible, a Self-Assessment before scheduling a consultation with a Child Care Health Consultant.
  • Step Two: To schedule a coaching consultation, call or send an email to CCAKS.
  • Step Three: Child care programs that complete a Self-Assessment and receive a coaching consultation from a Child Care Health Consultant are eligible to apply for a health & safety grant.
  • Step Four: You will receive notification of grant decision from CCAKS.
For more information, please visit the Child Care Health Consultant Network website.

Early Childhood Resources 

Farm to Child Nutrition Program Sub Grants Available
Bringing the bounty of America’s farms into Child Nutrition Programs as a part of breakfast and lunch is one of the best ways we can ensure children are receiving nutritious and delicious meals at school or child care! 2020-2021 Farm to Child Nutrition Program Sub-Grant Applications are at www.kn-eat.org, Farm to School, What’s New.  Child Nutrition sponsors can apply now to improve access to local foods in Child Nutrition Programs and increase agricultural education opportunities.  Sub Grant applications are due on or before December 1, 2020.  Contact Barb Depew at bdepew@ksde.org or 786-296-0062 if you have questions.

#Test4Lead
Childhood lead poisoning prevention is a priority for KDHE. Even at low levels, lead can cause irreversible damage to hearing, growth and development. View resources in Spanish and English on the KDHE website.

2021-2022 AmeriCorps Kansas funding
AmeriCorps Kansas assists programs to recruit, train and supervise AmeriCorps members meeting critical community needs. Grant applicants must design service activities for a team of members serving full- or part-time throughout the year or during the summer. Initial grant applications are due on December 4, 2020, and final applications are due on January 29, 2021. Visit https://kanserve.org/Grants-and-Funding/Apply-for-AmeriCorps-State-Grant for more information.

Kansas Breastfeeding Coalition
90% of Kansas families choose to breastfeed. The KBC has helped many child care providers achieve the “Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Provider” designation from Child Care Aware of Kansas. For evidence-based breastfeeding resources, visit the KBC’s Child Care page. For local help, click HERE for a directory of local breastfeeding coalitions. For general assistance, including grant ideas, budgets, data and more, contact Brenda Bandy, IBCLC.

Join us for our next Kansas Early Childhood
Systems-Building Webinar on Wednesday, November 4th, at 12pm.
Click to Register

Uniontown Health Clinic Moving Forward To Open in 2021

The building for the medical clinic is south of the Uniontown High School Football Field.

Uniontown will soon have a health clinic.

The small town in western Bourbon County, population approximately 300, is 20 miles away from health care in Fort Scott and 25 miles from Iola, the two largest towns with clinics nearby.

 

Spearheaded by Uniontown Ruritan, and the vision of several members of the community, the Uniontown health clinic is a collaboration of Ruritan, USD 235 School District, the Bourbon County Commission, the City of Uniontown and Girard Medical Center.

To see a prior fortscott.biz story on the clinic, click below:

Uniontown Collaboration: New Health Clinic Coming

Girard Medical Clinic, Girard, Ks. Photo from its’ website.

“We at GMC want to partner with the local community there in Uniontown to offer primary care services for an area where it is difficult to access those services currently,” Ruth Duling, Girard Medical Center CEO said.

The project is moving forward quicker since receiving U.S. coronavirus emergency funds which is distributed locally through the Bourbon County SPARK program. That program is to spur on the Kansas economy following the devastating effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) grant was applied for by Uniontown’s school district, which owns the property for the health clinic. The building is the former superintendent’s office.

Mark Warren, Uniontown Ruritan member, opens the door of the medical clinic building just south of the Uniontown High School football field.

“The school district applied for SPARK funding because the property to be renovated for use as the clinic,  belongs to the school,” Duling said.

“Completion will be after the first of the year,” Duling said. ” I don’t have any idea yet on a date when the clinic will be fully operational.  Since the renovation stage is being completed by mostly volunteer work and the availability of that workforce, it’s just difficult to say until we get further in the process…the renovation is in the very early stages.”

Uniontown Ruritan MemberJoe George has taken the lead on the renovation project with input from Girard Medical Center Engineering staff Judd Pride and Pat Holt and its’ Director of Clinic Operations Candi Adams, Duling said.

 

History The Clinic

Uniontown Mayor Larry Jurgensen explored a health clinic in the town with Fort Scott Mercy Hospital, Mark Warren said.
“At the time the Marathon Valley Nursing Home shut down,” he said.
” Mercy told him they didn’t want to explore a clinic out here because we were close enough to go to Ft. Scott, but instead put clinics in Arma and Pleasanton which were approximately the same distance from Ft. Scott ,” Warren said.  “This irritated people out here. The matter was then dropped for a period of years.”
Warren then visited with Holly Koch, Chief Financial Officer of Girard Medical Center and a resident of Uniontown.
He shared with Koch about the possibility of a Girard Medical Center satellite clinic.
After Koch spoke with Duling, meetings were organized which included the City of Uniontown, Ruritan, Girard Medical Center, Senator Jerry Moran’s office, Uniontown citizens, a Pittsburg doctor, Bourbon County Commissioner Lynn O’Harah, and Bourbon County Economic Director Jodi Hoener.
When Mercy Hospital closed in Dec. 2018 things began to progress, Warren said.
“We had residents here now (who were) a longer distance from health services,” Warren said.  “Girard went to work then.  Ruth asked me and I asked Larry and Judy Jurgensen both to come with me to a Girard Hospital board meeting.  Larry gave the historical timeline of his interaction with Mercy to them of which we left that meeting feeling we had their support.  The only thing left was funding.”
“The  Uniontown Ruritan Club offered to help fundraise but as federal SPARK money became available and Jayhawk Wind ( a wind energy company) heard about it, we found we could still fundraise but possibly not have to work so hard at it.  Jayhawk and SPARK money was the final piece of the puzzle to get this project finally started and going and to make a Uniontown clinic a reality.”
Jayhawk Wind contributed a $20,000 grant to help fund the Uniontown Clinic, which will also serve the towns in nearby communities, according to its’ website: http://www.jayhawkwind.com/
The SPARK Grant was for $88,000, according to Warren.

 

 

 

 

Health Department Halts Weekly COVID 19 Updates

Southeast Kansas Multi-County Health Department will no longer be sending out a weekly update, but will be referring those interested in COVID-19 case counts to: https://www.coronavirus.kdheks.gov/160/COVID-19-in-Kansas

 

If you are interested in the active case count for your county, you can always call your local health department for those details. We are open Monday-Thursday.

 

We will be updating our Facebook page and website within the next month or so. So, be looking for changes there regarding COVID-19 and other updates.

 

Thank you,

 

 

Rebecca Johnson

SEK Multi-County Health Departments

Administrator

Halloween Guidelines In A Pandemic

KS Dept. of Health and Environment Guidance for Celebrating Halloween, September 2020

This document outlines guidance and considerations for celebrating Halloween during the COVID-19 pandemic. As typical Halloween celebrations do not allow for minimizing contact with non-household members, it is important to plan early and identify safer alternatives. Refer also to any specific city or county guidance in your community which may be more restrictive than what is outlined below.

Halloween Activities Not Recommended

• Gatherings, events, or parties with non-household members
• Carnivals, festivals, live entertainment, and haunted house attractions
• Door to door trick or treating – It is very difficult to maintain proper social distancing on porches and at front doors, ensure everyone (trick or treaters and residents of homes being visited) are properly wearing face coverings, and because food sharing is risky.
• “Trunk or treating” – It is difficult to avoid crowding and sharing food at such events.
• Traveling to a rural fall festival that is not in your community if you live in an area with community spread of COVID-19.

Recommended

• Online parties or contests (e.g., costume contests, pumpkin carving)
• Car parades
o Drive by events or contests where individuals dress up or decorate vehicles and drive by judges that are appropriately physically distanced
o Drive through events where individuals remain in vehicles and drive through an area with Halloween displays
o Drive in events where individuals receive a treat bag (with commercially packaged, non-perishable treats) or take away item from an organizer while the participants remain in their vehicle
• Halloween movie nights at drive in theaters
• Halloween themed meals at outdoor restaurants, complying with restaurant protocol
• Halloween themed art installations at an outdoor museum, complying with museum protocol
• Dressing up homes and yards with Halloween themed decorations

Personal Protection Measures

Regardless of how you celebrate, there are important recommendations for how to keep yourself and your household members safe.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home and around others who are not part of your household.
• Avoid confined spaces, including indoor spaces that don’t allow for easy distancing of at least 6-feet between you and others.
• Practice physical distancing – place at least 6-feet between yourself and other people who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Clean frequently touched items regularly.

Safer Trick or Treating and “Trunk or Treating”
Although KDHE does not recommend trick or treating or “Trunk or Treat” events as ways to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make these choices for yourself or members of your household.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home.
o Incorporate face coverings into costumes.
o Face coverings should not be worn by children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing, and anyone who is otherwise unable to remove their cloth face covering without assistance.
• Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals while outside your home.
• Consider carrying sanitizing wipes to disinfect candy or other items accepted from homes. Or, sanitize items individually when you get home before consumption. Remember to also examine treats for choking hazards or tampering before eating them.
• Accept only commercially packaged, non-perishable items.
• Practice physical distancing.
o Always leave at least 6-feet of space between yourself and people not in your household.
o Do not crowd sidewalks, driveways, or porches.
o Wait until a porch or doorway is empty before approaching a home.
o Move aside on sidewalks and driveways to allow space between yourself and other trick or treaters.
o Keep a safe distance from cars – do not walk in the street.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, follow all guidelines above while also considering:
o Maintain at least 6-feet of distance between yourself and other attendees as you walk around.
o Wait for others to depart a car/trunk before approaching. Do not congregate at a car/trunk with other attendees unless they are members of your household.
Guidance for Homes Accepting Trick or Treaters
• When answering the door or coming into contact with trick or treaters, correctly wear a cloth face covering.

• Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds at regular intervals; hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be substituted if soap and water are not available.
• Regularly clean and sanitize frequently touched items such as door handles, door bells, and door knockers. Consider having sanitizing wipes by the door for quick access between trick or treaters.
• Distribute only commercially produced, non-perishable items to trick or treaters.
• Do not use “grab bowls”, where trick or treaters reach into a communal bowl to retrieve candy.
• Practice one-way trick or treating
o Consider spacing items 6-feet apart on your porch, in your yard or on a table in your driveway with a sign advising trick or treaters to “Take 1”. Watch from a safe distance and replenish items as needed.
o Alternatively, make individual goodie bags for trick or treaters to pick up as they walk by. If your home has a fence, consider hanging individual goodie bags on the fence for trick or treaters to take as they walk by.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, also consider:
o Participating cars should be parked at least 6-feet apart.
o Make individual goodie bags and place them in your trunk so they are not touching. Maintain a distance of at least 6-feet from other attendees and replenish bags or items as needed.
o Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals.
o Sanitize high-touch areas at regular intervals. Consider having sanitizing wipes on hand.
Halloween Parties
Although KDHE does not recommend hosting or attending parties as a way to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make this choice for yourself or members of your household.
• Remind potential guests who are sick or waiting on results of a COVID-19 test to stay home.
• Host activities with only people from your local area as much as possible.
• Correctly wear a cloth face covering around others who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Consider only hosting or attending parties hosted in large, outdoor spaces that allow for physical distancing of at least 6-feet between attendees. If an event must be hosted indoors, make sure the space is well-ventilated (for example, open windows and doors).
• Maintain at least 6-feet between yourself and people who are not members of your household, especially when cloth face coverings are removed for eating and drinking.

• When setting up tables and chairs, create individual seating areas of various sizes spaced 6-feet apart to be utilized by individual family or household units. Encourage guests to sit only with those who are members of their household, especially for eating and drinking when cloth face coverings will be removed.
• Avoid activities that require guests to be in close contact or to share items, such as games or food.
• Encourage guests to bring their own food and drinks.
• Limit people going in and out of areas where food is being prepared, such as kitchens or grills.
• Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces and any shared items between use when feasible.

General Halloween Health and Safety Tips

In addition to modifications to Halloween activities to reduce the spread of COVID-19, remember the following general Halloween health and safety tips to keep you and members of your household safe.
• Avoid trick or treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.
• Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.
• Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them.
• Hold a flashlight while trick or treating to help you see and others see you.
• Walk, don’t run, from house to house.
• Look both ways before crossing the street. Use crosswalks whenever possible.
• Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible. Avoid walking in streets and roadways. If there is no sidewalk, walk along the far edge of the road facing traffic in order to stay safe.
• Wear well-fitting costumes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.
• Eat only commercially produced, non-perishable treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.
• Do not enter homes unless you are with a trusted adult.
• Only visit well-lit homes.
• Never accept rides from strangers.
• Never walk near candles or luminaries. Wear flame-resistant costumes.

References
1. Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Guidance for Celebrating Halloween. Retrieved September 2020 from http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus/docs/community/GuidanceHalloween.pdf.
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Halloween Health and Safety Tips. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/family/halloween/index.htm.
3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Personal and Social Activities. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/personal-social-activities.html#gatherings.

4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Holiday Celebrations. Retrieved September 2020 from
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html.