Union County Strong: Community Resources During COVID-19

— Written By and last updated by Nancie Mandeville
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Map of Union County Community Resource Locations

While the impact of COVID-19, is unique for each of us, there are some things that we have in common. We all want our children to continue to get the best education possible while learning at home, we want to ensure our family that there will be food on the table, and we all want to maintain our homes with electricity, water, and other necessities.

Here in Union County and in North Carolina, there are resources to help during this season of change. In this article, I am providing information about some of the services that are available.

Nutrition Services

Families that need food assistance for their children can text FOODNC to 877-877 to locate nearby free meal sites. This service is also available in Spanish by texting COMIDA to 877-877. Upon entering their address, parents will receive a text with the location and serving times for nearby pick-up and drive-thru meal sites. Sites have been set up across the state for families with children 18 and younger, including pre-school.

Parents can also call 2-1-1 to speak with an operator who will help them locate meal sites in their community. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Services are also provided in Spanish and many other languages.

To locate restaurants, churches, and nonprofit organizations that are serving free meals to children in Union County visit Union County Schools.

Additionally, No Kid Hungry has created a map of local school sites, community organizations and food assistance programs across North Carolina. The interactive map is updated daily.

While the Union County Department of Health and Human Services is closed, you may still apply for food stamps online at NC ePASS or print and mail to: Union County Human Services, 2330 Concord Ave. Monroe, NC 28110. You can also fax the completed form to 704-296-4363. Drop off is available also, just past the Human Services building drive-through window or in front of the flag pole.

In Union County there are several food pantries, here are a few:

Common Heart
General Offices, Common Cupboard, CONNECTS, Serving U, & all programs
The Commonplace Community Resource Center
116 Business Park Dr. Suite A, Indian Trail, NC 28079
Phone: 704-218-9060

Common Heart serves the community with both traditional and mobile pantries throughout the county.

Langford Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church
113 South Johnson Street
Monroe, NC 28110

Open Arms Community Outreach
4603 Lancaster Highway, Monroe, NC, 28112

Open Arms Community Outreach serves Union, Anson, and Lancaster Counties through their traditional pantry.
United Methodist Church
6315 New Town Rd, Waxhaw, NC 28173

The United Methodist Church is operating a drive through pantry on Thursday’s at 7:00 p.m.

Union County DSS/Pantry – 704-296-4312
1212 Roosevelt Blvd., Monroe, NC, 28111

Community Shelter of Union County – 704-289-5300
160 Meadow Street, Monroe, NC 28110

Educational Resources

NC State University College of Education offers online learning resources for parents and students.

NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources

In addition to resources from your child’s school, you can supplement their learning with lots of exciting educational activities found at the NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (DNCR). The site has launched new online content for students, teachers, parents and everyone who is learning from home, during this time.

NC Zoo

Even though the NC Zoo is closed due to COVID-19, there are still opportunities to learn about wildlife virtually through their website. You can also find out about the many educational programs that are available during the year, such as training and field investigations for youth when it reopens.

Public Broadcast Station (PBS)

Check out PBS online for both adult and children’s educational programming and activities.

Internet Access

According to the American Community Survey, 5-Year Estimates (2009-2018)

3.6 % of students in Union County do not have computers. While 16.9 % of students do not have high-speed internet that allows video streaming. One source for internet service to families that qualify is free service offered by Spectrum. Call 1-844-488-8395 to enroll.

These are a few resources that are available in our county. To learn more please visit the Union County Government website. Share this information with someone that may benefit from it. Although, the list contains only some of the many resources available, hopefully, it is a start in the right direction.