HCHRA Operations and Work Schedules as of March 26, 2020

In an effort to protect the health and safety of our staff, customers, and the communities we serve, HCHRA Administration has determined that all HCHRA offices will remain closed due to escalating health concerns related to COVID-19.

Head Start center staff and children will return on Monday, April 20th, unless otherwise notified.  All other staff will report to work on April 6th, and all HCHRA offices and programs (other than the Head Start centers) will be open for business as usual on Monday, April 6th, unless otherwise notified. Updates on HCHRA operations will be posted here on our website every Thursday morning until further notice.

Though HCHRA staff is working remotely, we are still dedicated to providing timely and professional service.  If you or someone you know has any concerns that need immediate attention, please dial 601-923-1822 and leave a message stating the nature of your call.  Be sure to include your contact information.  Calls are being monitored and a staff person will respond within 24 hours (excluding weekends).  You can also reach us by email at HelpDesk@hchra.org.

Let’s all do our part to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

 

UPDATE: Head Start Centers to Remain Closed Through April 17th

In response to ongoing health concerns related to COVID-19, and in accordance with Governor Tate Reeves’ executive orders, Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start centers will remain closed through April 17, 2020.

As we go through this very unusual and challenging time, HCHRA is encouraging our Head Start families to spend time together reading and learning.  To support those efforts, we are happy to provide our families with access to myON and The Healthy at Home Toolkit.

myON is an online collection of thousands of fiction and nonfiction digital books that you can access from home or anywhere you have Internet access!  You can also download books for offline reading.  About 10% of the titles are available in Spanish, and the book reader allows children to choose different reading support tools like audio narration (where the content of the book is said aloud as the child reads along), text highlighting (to show what word is being read), and there’s also a dictionary for every book. myON also gives you the ability to practice the Star Early Literacy Assessment – the reading test for students to take on a computer.  Below is all of the information you need to get started.

Website Address
www.myON.com
School Name:  Hinds County Human Resource Agency
Username: headstart
Password:  read

The Healthy at Home Toolkit provides our families with free learning activities that are easy to implement and can meet the different learning needs of our Head Start children. This toolkit was created by Teaching Strategies, ReadyRosie and The Creative Curriculum – they are the very same tools our teachers use in the Head Start classroom everyday.

Click here to access the Healthy at Home Toolkit. If you have trouble accessing the link, go to healthyathome.readyrosie.com.

Although we can’t physically come together at this time, these tools will provide endless hours of great learning activities. So, let’s get started today!

We will continue to monitor the situation with COVID-19 while we seek guidance from our local and state officials to determine school plans moving forward.  We will be sure to keep you informed of any new developments.  We miss our students and families and can’t wait to see your smiling faces again.  Until that time, let’s all do our part to limit the spread of COVID-19.

If you have any concerns that needs immediate attention, please dial 601-923-1822 and leave a message stating the nature of your call.  Be sure to include your contact information.  Calls are being monitored and a staff person will respond within 24 hours (excluding weekends). You can also reach us by email at HelpDesk@hchra.org.

Online Learning Tools for Head Start Families

As we go through this very unusual and challenging time, HCHRA is encouraging our Head Start families to spend time together reading and learning.  We are happy to provide our families with access to myON and The Healthy at Home Toolkit.

myON is an online collection of thousands of fiction and nonfiction digital books that you can access from home or anywhere you have Internet access!  You can also download books for offline reading.  About 10% of the titles are available in Spanish, and the book reader allows children to choose different reading support tools like audio narration (where the content of the book is said aloud as the child reads along), text highlighting (to show what word is being read), and there’s also a dictionary for every book. myON also gives you the ability to practice the Star Early Literacy Assessment – the reading test for students to take on a computer.  Below is all of the information you need to get started.

Website Address
www.myON.com
School Name:  Hinds County Human Resource Agency
Username: headstart
Password:  read

The Healthy at Home Toolkit provides our families with free learning activities that are easy to implement and can meet the different learning needs of our Head Start children. This toolkit was created by Teaching Strategies, ReadyRosie and The Creative Curriculum – they are the very same tools our teachers use in the Head Start classroom everyday.

Click here to access the Healthy at Home Toolkit. If you have trouble accessing the link, go to healthyathome.readyrosie.com.

Although we can’t physically come together at this time, these tools will provide endless hours of great learning activities. So, let’s get started today!

Spring Break Extended Through March 27, 2020 for HCHRA Head Start Program

Due to the escalating health concerns related to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start has decided to extend Spring Break through March 27th.  All Head Start centers will remain closed and all parent meetings have been cancelled during this time.

We regret the inconvenience the school closure may cause, but in an effort to protect the health and safety of our Head Start children and families and the staff, we must comply with the recommendations of our federal, state, and local leaders to close schools.

We will continue to monitor the situation and keep you informed of any new developments.

To learn more about COVID-19 and what precautions you should take to protect you and your family, visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov. The Mississippi State Health Department also has a hotline set up to take questions from the public.  It is currently available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The number is 1-877-978-6453. 

Entergy Suspends All Disconnects

On March 14, 2020, Entergy announced that they would temporarily suspend customer disconnects for the next 30 days.  On March 16, 2020, they updated the announcement to say they will suspend all disconnects until further notice as they continue to monitor the potential impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on its customers.

Click here to see the full announcement from Entergy, and please share it with others who may find it helpful.

Head Start Centers Closed Until March 18, 2020

Due to growing health concerns related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) disease, Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start will extend Spring Break until Wednesday, March 18, 2020.  Children will not attend school on Monday or Tuesday.  All teachers and central office staff will report to work as normal on Monday, March 16 to prepare for the return of our Head Start students on Wednesday, March 18.

We will continue to monitor this rapidly evolving situation while we seek guidance from our local and state officials to determine school plans moving forward.  We will be sure to keep you informed of any new developments.

A Message from Our CEO about the Coronavirus

What You Need to Know about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Over the past few weeks, a lot of news about coronavirus has been reported as the infectious disease continues to spread worldwide.  It was reported that north Mississippi residents who came in contact with Tennessee residents infected with the disease had to been quarantined as a precautionary measure to prevent further infection.  And most recently, three new cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in Forrest County.

As the disease gets closer and closer to our community, everyone is concerned.  I want you to know that the health and safety of our employees and the children and families we serve is our first priority.  Here are a few of the most important things you need to know about the coronavirus.

HOW IT SPREADS

  • The virus spreads easily between people through close contact (within 6 feet), or being in proximity of a carrier when they cough or sneeze. It is most contagious when the carrier is showing the symptoms, which can appear within 2-14 days of exposure to the virus. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
  • It is suspected it may also be contracted through touching contaminated surfaces as some have been infected with the virus just by being in the area where it is present.

AVOID CONTAGION

  • There is currently no vaccine for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The recommended way to avoid contagion is to avoid close contact with those who are sick. Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth. Clean and disinfect frequently touched items and surfaces regularly. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with a minimum of 60% alcohol content before you eat and after you use the bathroom, blow your nose, cough or sneeze.

AVOID SPREADING

  • If you are sick, you must stay home from work, school or any other social activities that would expose others, and call a doctor immediately. If you need to go to the hospital, please call the facility and report symptoms, recent travel and possible exposure BEFORE going there. Let them know if you have visited an area or come in contact with someone who has the coronavirus. They will determine with the help of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) if you need to be tested for the disease. If you HAVE to travel in public it is recommended that you wear a facemask to keep from infecting others and avoid public transportation like trains, buses and taxis. When you sneeze or cough use a tissue and throw the tissue away.

CARE AT HOME

  • If you become sick, it is important you stay away from others at home. Stay in an isolated room and even bathroom if possible. Keep frequently touched objects and surfaces cleaned and sanitized. It is recommended that you avoid contact with pets as well during your illness. Do not share everyday items like dishes, silverware, drinking glasses, towels, or bedding with others in the house, and those items should be washed thoroughly with soap and water.
  • If your symptoms worsen (e.g., it becomes harder to breathe), contact a healthcare provider immediately and inform them you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19.

IF YOU THINK YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS INFECTED

  • For every HCHRA employee and family member covered under our health insurance plan, UnitedHealthcare will waive copays, coinsurance and deductibles for COVID-19 diagnostic testing provided at approved locations in accordance with CDC guidelines for all covered members.
  • Call your primary care provider right away if you believe you might have been exposed to COVID-19. Your provider will have special procedures for you to follow.  UnitedHealthcare members can find a network provider by visiting myuhc.com.

At the center of HCHRA’s purpose is our desire to help families and strengthen communities.  We are committed to taking care of our team and those we serve.  In the coming weeks, we’ll be sure to provide guidance and additional information to help keep you and your families safe.  To learn more about COVID-19 and for the most up-to-date developments, you can visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov at any time.

Safe regards,

Kenn Cockrell
President and CEO

March 7th is Super Tax Day!

On Saturday, March 7th, you can get professional tax help, on us!

HCHRA has partnered with Entergy to provide a team of IRS-certified volunteers who will help with the entire process – from identifying all available credits to submitting your paperwork – and you get your full refund at absolutely no cost to you.

Super Tax Day
Saturday, March 7, 2020
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Jackson Convention Complex
105 E. Pascagoula Street – Jackson, Mississippi

Boil Water Advisory for Jackson Has Been Lifted

According to local media sources, the boil water advisory issued by the City of Jackson on Thursday, February 13, 2020, has been lifted and is no longer in effect.  Water samples were taken on yesterday and tests were all clear.

If you need more information on the boil water advisory, Jackson residents may call 601-960-2723 during business hours or 601-960-1778 after 4 p.m. and on weekends.