Practical Needs and Volunteering in Columbia MO during COVID-19

Meeting Practical Needs During COVID-19

How You Can Help


We are the body of Christ and believe we are called to care for each other. Throughout this season of social distancing practical needs will arise for supplies, prayer, someone to talk to (on the phone), etc. If you are willing to help us to love others we ask that you please fill out the form below. Then we will contact you to let you know what is needed.


There will be an increase in financial need in our community due to social distancing. A variety of uncontrollable situations could cause families to be unable to pay for basic necessities. If you would like to donate to our special COVID-19 Benevolence Fund please click the “give” button bellow and use the following steps:

  1. Give: Enter amount you would like to give
  2. Gift Type: choose “give one time”
  3. Giving Type: Benevolence
  4. Memo: COVID-19
  5. Hit Next and then continue with personal payment information

  6. Need Help?

    If you are in need of basic necessities in this season please find helpful information and resources below. We will continue adding resources as we hear about them. If none of these can meet your needs please fill out this form to let CF know what your needs are.



    Businesses Offering Meals for Kids

    • CoMo Smoke and Fire: Free sack lunches
    • Equipment Share: No child Hungry; At least 50 free lunches daily at Douglass, Jay Dixon Park and the parking lot next to the firehouse on Vawter School Road at 10:30am
    • McDonald’s: Offering all school-age children a free meal with a choice of: hamburger, cheeseburger or four piece chick nugget with a small fry and apples or yogurt. Available Monday – Friday from 11am to 2pm.
    • The Quarry: Free sack lunches available from 11am to 1pm (delivery)
    • Broadway Dinner: Free meals and sack lunches from 4am – 4pm
    • Columbia Public Schools: Grab and Go Bus Stop Times and Locations

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    Courts in Boone County are hearing limited cases through April 17 and evictions are not listed as types of cases that will be heard. Anyone with a current case is advised to check for their status during this period.

    Missouri has not enacted any state or local eviction protection provisions at this time.

    Utility and Rent Assistance
    City of Columbia, Boone Electric, and Ameren are not assessing late fees or servicing disconnects on delinquent accounts. However, past due amounts must still be paid and will continue to accrue. Several organizations continue to provide utility assistance.

    Ameren Missouri Coronavirus Income Relief Program was developed to offer assistance to workers from a variety of businesses such as restaurants, daycare facilities, retail stores and other organizations who normally do not qualify for energy assistance. Under the program, customers with an active Ameren account can apply for $250 toward payment on their accounts. To apply, customers need to visit United Way’s website.

    Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services
    1005 W Worley
    Columbia, MO 65203
    573-817-6430 For assistance with the eligibility process
    Please call or email for assistance!
    Utility Assistance
    Application: The Division of Human Services provides assistance for water and electric bills for eligible families with children under the age of 18, disabled adults, and seniors (age 60 and older). To be eligible, the applicant’s household income must be at or below 150% of the federal poverty level and the utility account must be in the eligible applicant’s name. Find application here.

    United Way 2-1-1
    If you are in need of assistance finding food, childcare, assistance paying household bills, locating mental health services or other essential services contact United Way 2-1-1. It’s FREE and CONFIDENTIAL. Specialists are available 24/7. Dial 2-1-1 or 1-800-427-4626 TTY 1-866-385-6525.

    Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri:
    For energy assistance contact the Administrative and Community Services office in Jefferson City
    2201 W. Main Street
    PO Box 104626 Jefferson City, MO 65110
    (573) 635-7719
    For households with income at 150% of the Federal Poverty guidelines or below are eligible for up to $250.00 of financial assistance each fiscal year (July 1 – June 30). Individuals must schedule an appointment by calling the phone number above to complete an intake and provide required documentation. The waitlist is often two weeks out.

    Central Missouri Community Action (CMCA)
    CMCA is closed until at least April 3rd
    800 N Providence Rd, Suite 103
    Columbia, MO 65203.

    St. Vincent de Paul Society (SVDP)
    SVDP is a group of volunteers that distribute benevolence funds to those in need. To access their funds, those in need must call on Monday-Friday from 8:30 AM – 9:30 AM and leave a message: name (and spelling), date of birth, phone number, and an explanation of need. They will call back if they feel they can help. St. Vincent de Paul collaborates closely with Love INC. We are in frequent communication to partner by sharing resources (funds and volunteers). Their home visit teams often provide insight that assists Love INC in making decisions about how to best help.

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    Filing for Unemployment

    Unemployment Criteria


    • Unemployment benefits are available to individuals who are totally or partially unemployed due to no fault of their own.
    • If an employer required an individual to stay home but did not offer telework, the individual might be eligible for benefits.
    • If an employer must shut down operations temporarily and no work is available, individuals may be eligible for unemployment benefits if they meet the eligibility criteria. Weekly work search requirements are not required when there is a recall date within eight weeks of the temporary lay-off.


    • An individual off work and still receiving pay in the form of paid sick leave, vacation pay or family medical leave pay while off of work is not “unemployed” and is ineligible for unemployment benefits.
    • If an employer allowed an individual to telework and the individual chose not to accept that work, they would not qualify for benefits because they would not be unemployed.
    • If an individual leaves work to care for children due to school/daycare closures as a result of COVID-19 they are ineligible to receive unemployment benefits in most cases.
    • If an individual has exhausted unemployment benefits for the benefit year, they are ineligible for additional unemployment benefits due to the Coronavirus

    Filing for Unemployment

    • If this is your first time filing for unemployment please watch this video on unemployment basics.
    • Visit UInteract to file for unemployment and access our video gallery, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
    • Regional Claims Center representatives are available by phone Monday – Friday from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM by calling:
    • Jefferson City 573-751-9040
    • Kansas City 816-889-3101
    • Springfield 417-895-6851
    • St. Louis 314-340-4950
    • Outside Local Calling Area 800-320-2519

    Or to contact Regional Claims Center representative by email:

    UInteract ( is an easy to use mobile-friendly online Unemployment Insurance application that is available to workers and employers 24/7.

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    Find Childcare

    ChildCare Aware of Missouri

    Emergency Child Care Resource for Essential Personnel

    Child Care Subsidy
    Missouri Department of Social Services

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    COVID-19 Specific Resources