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Your One-Stop for COVID-19 Updates

WHAT’S NEW

With information coming at you from so many directions, we wanted to provide easy access to announcements and updates from Embrace Families during the COVID-19 health emergency. Refer back to this blog frequently to locate an archive of information in chronological order. Keep in mind that, in this fast-changing environment, the most recent information will be the most current and accurate.


POSTED: Updated Daily

TOPIC:  COVID-19 Medical Care Information for Caregiver Families

Caregiver Families: You can find the most accurate and updated information about the Coronavirus, especially as it impacts our children in foster care, through the CBC Integrated Health website.

Go to https://www.cbcih.net/covid-19


UPDATED: April 3, 2020   FIRST POSTED: March 25, 2020

TOPIC: Judicial Court schedule changes during COVID-19 health emergency

Please be aware that the courts in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties have once again adjusted their trial schedules and hearing protocols for the duration of the COVID-19 emergency response period.  This includes the court’s Dependency Divisions.

Click here for details  from each of our region’s court systems.


POSTED: April 3, 2020

TOPIC: IRS announces “what you need to know” about COVID-19 economic impact payments

As has been widely reported in the news media, individuals and families across America will be eligible to receive a direct payment through the federal government, which is intended to help households impacted by the COVID-19 economic slowdown.  

Click here for “What you need to know” information about this economic impact payment from the IRS.


POSTED: April 1, 2020

TOPIC: Embrace Families’ Children’s Advocacy Center Osceola open for business during COVID-19

CAC Osceola provides specialized care to child abuse victims and their non-offending caregivers.  This essential service remains open and fully operational during the COVID-19 community health emergency.

Click here for up-to-date information and advice from our team at CAC Osceola.  In Seminole County contact Kids House and in Orange County contact The Howard Phillips Center for Children & Families.


POSTED: March 29, 2020

TOPIC:  When and How to Report Coronavirus Symptoms

With the rise in reported cases of COVID-19 in Florida, we are working to ensure that information being disseminated is factual and that all of the children and families we support are safe.

Click here for information you need if you, or someone in your home, are experiencing symptoms associated with Coronavirus.


UPDATED:   March 26, 2020          FIRST POSTED: March 23, 2020

TOPIC: Guidelines for child and home visits during COVID-19 quarantine

Click here to review complete guidelines from Embrace Families re: Caseworker Visits During COVID-19.

In the effort to ensure the safety of both the professionals who work for our partner agencies and the families that we serve, Embrace Families has issued the following guidelines to be followed throughout the current COVID-19 health emergency:

1) Home Visitation – Virtual: In accordance with CBC recommendations and local “stay at home” orders,  virtual services and/or visits with children and families are strongly recommended. When providing virtual services, applications such as Skype, FaceTime and Google Duo are required.  Virtual visits should be scheduled a minimum of every two weeks.

2) Home Visitation – Face to Face: If, due to safety concerns for the child(ren), a family, caregiver or child must be seen face-to-face, staff professionals are required to follow safety precautions as recommended by the CDC guidelines. These include: screening for COVID-19 symptoms within the home, maintaining a safe social distance (6 feet or more), scheduling meetings and services in outdoor locations, etc. 

3) Parent and Sibling Visitation: While every attempt should be made to keep parents and siblings in touch, adjustments are necessary during this period of time.  Effective immediately, Seminole County Court has issued an order suspending all face-to-face parent/sibling visits.  In Orange and Osceola Counties, court orders requiring face-to-face visits must be followed, but brought immediately to the attention of NetworkSupport@embracefamilies.org.  If a face-to-face is necessary, then the home must be screened for risk of exposure to COVID -19 and potential sickness prior to a visit. In addition, throughout the quarantine period, Case Managers should be communicating with parents to educate them on the seriousness and effects of the virus spread; and stressing that – to keep the children, themselves and staff safe – visits will be held via Skype or FaceTime. If those methods are not available, a telephone call can take place to ensure visitation.

These guidelines are effective as of March 23, 2020 and will be in effect for the duration of our state and local COVID-19 response.  Please share this information with staff; and please reach out to NetworkSupport@embracefamilies.org with any questions or concerns.


POSTED: March 24, 2020

TOPIC: Stay At Home Order takes effect Thursday, March 26 at 11 p.m.

Please note that the order from Orlando and Orange County specifically states that businesses that provide social services are deemed essential.  Employees working for Embrace Families and our provider partners will be allowed to leave their homes, as necessary, for official business.  However, for their safety and the safety of others, we will limit face-to-face visitation as much as possible.  Thank you for your cooperation as we work through this unprecedented time together.


POSTED: March 22, 2020

TOPIC: FREE meals from local schools 

Caregivers, make plans to access FREE meals from local schools March 23-27! Districts are providing meals for ALL children under the age of 18. Families may go to the nearest participating site and pick-up meals through the school’s bus loop (drive-thru service). Check your district’s link for more details.

ORANGE: http://bit.ly/ocpsgrabandgomeals
Pick-up 10 AM – 2 PM

OSCEOLA: https://bit.ly/33C25sl
Pick-up 9:30 – 11:00 AM

SEMINOLE: https://bit.ly/2U9SCpi
Pick-up 10:30 AM – 1 PM


POSTED: March 21, 2020

TOPIC: Placement policy for children with symptoms or exposure to COVID-19

Throughout this pandemic we are monitoring many sources and taking steps to ensure every precaution is taken and best practices are in place to keep our children and families safe.

At this point, we haven’t had any children come into care with symptoms of exposure. Of course, if and when that happens, we would provide that information upfront. But, to be honest, if a child comes in that was exposed, or has symptoms, our intent would not be to put them with a foster family and expose that family to risk. We are working on alternate placement options with appropriate medical care.

We will continue to provide updates on an ongoing basis.


POSTED: March 19, 2020

TOPIC: Words of thanks to our community of partners

Message to Embrace Families Caregivers: https://youtu.be/ev_PAWIgK0E

Message to Embrace Families Providers and Partners: https://youtu.be/DM2S9vLZfBw

Message to Embrace Families Staff: https://youtu.be/ZWXl83fYgsw


POSTED: March 17, 2020

TOPIC: Embrace Families Building Closure

The below information addresses new requirements related to building access and work-from-home procedures that went into effect today for the Embrace Families team members and our co-located partners.

Please be assured that all of us remain fully committed to providing services to your family and the children in your care, but to do that in accordance with recommended “social distancing” best practices designed to keep all of us healthy and safe.  Our operations will continue to be fully staffed and functioning, but our buildings will be closed to visitors and much of our work will be done in remote locations.  There are a couple of important exceptions: If supervised, in-person visitation is required by court order, arrangements will be made for alternate visitation meeting locations. Similarly, most regular meetings and home visits will be held via phone, skype or facetime rather than in person, unless otherwise required by court order.

If you are not sure how this change in procedure will impact your home or upcoming visits, please reach out CaregiverEligibility@EmbraceFamilies.org for clarification.

As you know, all of these measures are being taken as part of a nationwide effort to reduce the occurrence of a highly contagious virus.   We ask that you continue to be diligent with your own health and the health of those around you.  We appreciate you and are here to help.


POSTED: March 14, 2020

TOPIC: COVID-19 Information for Caregiver Families

Caregiver Families: You can find the most accurate and updated information about the Coronavirus, especially as it impacts our children in foster care, through the CBC Integrated Health website.

Go to https://www.cbcih.net/covid-19