Resource Library

COVID-19 Update: The John T. Gorman Foundation is curating a list of resources, emerging best practices, and innovative ideas from across the country to help local organizations serve vulnerable Mainers during the coronavirus outbreak. To access those resources, visit or enter Covid-19 in the keyword search. Those results can be further focused by using the “Filter by” menu above to filter by population type (Young Children, Older Youth, Families, and Seniors) or by clicking the following links: childcare, education, food security, housing, rural areas, and workforce.

The John T. Gorman Foundation strives to be data-driven and results based and seeks to promote information and ideas that advance greater understanding of issues related to our mission and priorities. In our effort to promote these values, we offer these research and best practice resources collected from reputable sources across the country. The library also includes briefs and reports the Foundation has commissioned or supported, a listing of which can be found here.


New Program "Support Buddies" supports isolated seniors during Coronavirus Pandemic

April 22, 2020 – Seniors

In Burlington, Vermont, the Heineberg Senior Center has launched “Support Buddies,” a program providing isolated seniors with a volunteer buddy tailored to their needs during the Coronavirus pandemic. Buddies are delivering restaurant-prepared meals, running errands, and providing phone call check-ins to local seniors, providing a critical social support when other senior center services are unavailable. #covid-19

Coronavirus could exacerbate the US census’ undercount of people of color

April 22, 2020 – General

A recent Quartz examination of 2010 Census self-response rates and confirmed COVID-19 cases in each county shows that some areas with historically lower self-response rates have also been greatly impacted by the pandemic. These counties also tend to have large shares of people of color, adding to concerns that the coronavirus will exacerbate the 2020 US Census undercount of communities of color. #covid-19

Taking advantage of unpaid leave can increase the chances that workers will face economic hardship

April 22, 2020 – Families

Using her recent research on paid sick leave, a researcher from Brandeis University summarizes economic challenges that the pandemic poses for workers who become sick or need to care for a family member. The patchwork of sick leave policies through employers, local, state, and now federal law (through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act) are largely capped at two weeks, which would be insufficient for those with long hospital stays, more severe symptoms, or multiple cases in the household. More importantly, sick leave is unaffordable for most workers: six weeks of unpaid leave would cost workers more than twice in wages what it would cost their counterparts with paid leave. #covid-19 #workforce

About Half of Lower-Income Americans Report Household Job or Wage Loss Due to COVID-19

April 21, 2020 – General

The Pew Research Center reports the results of their national survey of U.S. adults conducted in early April 2020. They find that the economic toll from COVID-19 is hitting lower-income adults harder than their middle- and upperincome peers. While 43% of adults overall said that they or someone in their household has either lost a job or taken a pay cut due to the pandemic, this share was 52% among lower-income adults. When stratified by age, race/ethnicity, and educational attainment, results show higher shares of household job loss or pay cuts among those identifying as Black, Hispanic, young adults (ages 18-29), and those with a high school education or less. #covid-19 #workforce

Are you happy or sad? How wearing face masks can impact children’s ability to read emotions

April 21, 2020 – Young Children

Some of the new norms, such as wearing face masks in public, have unintended social consequences. Early Childhood Education experts at Brookings note the confusing impact that masks may have on children, as face coverings make it more difficult for them to read facial expressions and receive emotional cues from their caregivers. Authors provide some tips for putting young children at ease, including introducing the face mask at home first, playing peek-a-boo to show that you’ll be smiling even when the mask is on, and explaining when you will be wearing the mask and that others will be wearing them outside too. #covid-19

How Public Housing Authorities Are Supporting Vulnerable Residents during COVID-19 (mentions Bangor Housing)

April 20, 2020 – Families

(CARES) Act, passed on March 27, authorized approximately $12 billion in funding for US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs to mitigate COVID-19’s impact. This funding is essential to keeping people stably housed, but it may fall short in providing additional targeted supports and services for low-income older adults and people with disabilities, many of whom live in public and assisted housing. Public Housing residents are more at risk during Covid-19. This article discussed ways that Public Housing Authorities and policymakers can better support public housing residents. #covid-19 #housing

New Covid-19 Risk Assessment Could Help Rural Mitigation Strategies

April 20, 2020 – General

New research out of Iowa State University highlighted by the Daily Yonder uses a new method of assessing COVID-19 risks in rural counties. They find that, in general, non-metropolitan (rural) counties are at a higher risk for complications related to COVID-19 than metropolitan (urban) counties. In fact, an estimated 31% of rural counties were identified as high-risk. Iowa State researchers suggest that this kind of risk analysis can inform mitigation strategies to protect vulnerable populations. #covid-19 #ruralresponse

New Hampshire organizations find creative solutions to housing needs

April 20, 2020 – General

The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation granted $250,000 from the state’s Community Crisis Action Fund to help vulnerable residents around the state, including those experiencing homelessness. Housing Action New Hampshire helped distribute these flexible funds to support homeless shelters with additional expenses such as renting hotel rooms to allow for appropriate social distancing, extra cleaning supplies, meal deliveries, and hazard and overtime pay for staff. Despite the circumstances, shelters like Cross Roads House have risen to the challenges, even continuing to find permanent housing for folks in need. #covid-19 #housing

Bus brings behavioral health care to rural Georgia families

April 19, 2020 – Young Children, Older Youth, Families

A new mobile health unit is now serving two rural counties in Georgia, run by a local behavioral health organization focused on youth aged 4-21 and their families and caregivers. The unit, called the THRIVE bus, was donated by a local fire department, and includes a registered nurse, a certified addiction counselor, and a social worker. Adhering to social distancing practices, the professionals provide basic medical screenings (including for COVID-19 symptoms) and mental health assessments, and instead of referring patients out, work to address immediate needs on the spot. Partnerships with local school systems and food pantries round out service offerings. #covid-19

Wentworth Senior Living put together game packets to ward off isolation and anxiety

April 18, 2020 – Seniors

To address the mental health effects of isolation and anxiety for seniors during the coronavirus Pandemic, Wentworth Senior Living in Portsmouth, New Hampshire has put together activity packets of crossword puzzles, trivia games, Sudoku, jokes, song lyrics, and discussion topics for their residents. These efforts are meant to keep residents engaged and connected and are available to nonresidents upon request. #covid-19

The scramble to feed the kids left hungry by the coronavirus crisis

April 17, 2020 – Young Children, Older Youth

School closures have cut students off from free and reduced-price school meals programs, with responses varying by district. One way to fill this gap is via temporary Pandemic-EBT (P-EBT) program. States submit a plan to implement the program, which gives a benefit to families to cover the cost of missed school meals due to coronavirus. Michigan and Rhode Island’s plans were the first to be approved by the USDA although several other states have also submitted plans and are awaiting approval. #covid-19

Why a Drop in Domestic Violence Reports Might Not Be a Good Sign

April 17, 2020 – Families

Nationwide, domestic violence agencies are concerned about the pandemic’s implications for adults and children in abusive or otherwise unsafe household situations. In response, nonprofit domestic violence agencies are bolstering efforts to reach those in need. One agency in Ohio is strengthening communications capacity with a 24/7 hotline and an expanded text option for those without reliable internet, while in Chicago, a partnership with Airbnb provides shelter for those escaping violence. #covid-19