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Listeners and readers have asked where to turn for help during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nevada Public Radio has organized the following stories with links to useful resources. They refer to entities that are addressing the outbreak and its ripple effects, such as food banks, unemployment agencies, governmental support for small businesses, and more. Please check back often as we continue to develop this list.We want to hear from you. If we’ve missed something, please add it in the comments or e-mail Note from CEO and President, Jerry Nadal RESOURCESCOVID-19 Tracker PUBLIC INFORMATIONThe agencies below are leading the government's response to the pandemic at various levels. These links go to their pages with information about the virus, its spread, and the ensuing public-health and economic crisis.Centers for Disease Control and PreventionNevada Department of Health and Human ServicesNevada Governor's OfficeSouthern Nevada Health DistrictOther public offices are offering their own resource guides as well. These contain links and contact information on where to find help with myriad issues related to the pandemic, from housing to unemployment insurance.City of Henderson COVID-19 Community ResourcesCity of Las Vegas Coronavirus UpdateClark County Coronavirus SummaryThe Department of Health and Human Services' Nevada 2-1-1 U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto's COVID-19 Resource GuideU.S. Senator Jacky Rosen's COVID-19 Nevada Resource Guide BUSINESS/EMPLOYERSThe Small Business Administration, or SBA, is offering various types of help for business owners impacted by the new coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis, including the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program. Since the SBA's emergency funding programs have launched in mid-March, they've seen a lot of turmoil. This timeline encapsulates the changes to the EIDL and Payroll Protection Plan, or PPP, and where they are today. FOODAmong the concerns of those finding themselves without work, one of the most basic and immediate is, “How will I feed my family?” This story contains links to resources such as food banks and food assistance programs, as well to organizations seeking donations and volunteers. Many casino-hotels on and off the Strip have donated their unused stores of food and water to both their own laid off employees and various charities, which, in turn, are innovating to get it to those most in need. The following is a summary of what’s available as of March 26, 2020. HEALTHCARE, MEDICINE, AND WELLNESSWhat kinds of tests are there, and where are they available locally? And maybe more importantly, who can — and should — get tested? This regularly updateed list shows viral testing sites in Southern Nevada. How do you care for someone in your home who is sick? David Weismiller, a family physician and professor in the UNLV School of Medicine’s department of family and community medicine, has some advice: protect yourself, keep others away, and don’t stop washing your hands.Does your health insurance cover testing and treatment for COVID-19? Insurance can be tricky… full of exceptions and terms that can allow some insurers to skirt the law. So, what is and isn't covered by your insurance when it comes to COVID-19? PARENTING/EDUCATIONAnd you thought summer vacation was bad… At least then you could take your kids to the pool or play dates! Being shut inside the house with them 24/7 and having the expectation that at least some of their time will be spent constructively is a new experience for most parents. Fortunately, many agencies and community groups offer resources to help. UNEMPLOYMENTWhat should the thousands of workers, who are being laid off due to the COVID-19 crisis, do? Here is some guidance from the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. The day after Governor Steve Sisolak’s order to close non-essential businesses, March 18, brought the promise of several programs to help families that might be affected by those closures and their resulting layoffs. Two nonprofit programs offer both assistance to those in need and opportunities for those who want to help to donate and volunteer, while the federal government’s Families First bill covers everything from free COVID-19 testing to worker relief. UNLV Law Professor Ruben Garcia, who co-directs the William S. Boyd School of Law’s Workplace Program, offers this practical, step-by-step guide to making the best of a difficult situation for workers who have been laid off. UTILITIESThree municipal water districts, Southwest Gas, and NV Energy have all pledged to work with customers on flexible repayment options and suspend service disconnections for the foreseeable future. All are encouraging customers to reach them by phone or online, as lobbies close to the public. Details and contact information for each of the utilities are included in this story. VOLUNTEER/DONATION OPPORTUNITIESHundreds of thousands of Nevadans are out of work due to the business shutdown mandated to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. That’s on top of the huge number of families who were already at risk of hunger and homelessness before the pandemic. Those looking to donate or volunteer can start with these opportunities. Below are links to the latest national stories from NPR, as well as local stories from KNPR newscasts and KNPR's State of Nevada.

Ode: The Soaker

Andrew in the Kiddie Pool

In praise of the cheapo kiddie pool

I don’t know why I didn’t get an inflatable pool earlier. Oh, wait, yeah I do — historically, I had a perpetual all-access family pass to my siblings’ suh-weet, brochure-ready backyard oases, proper pools resplendent with waterfalls, bubbling spas, beach entries, and cocktail grottoes — a privilege snatched away by the pandemic and relegated to the same purgatory of memory and longing where so much of our old normal life is now warehoused indefinitely.

But I didn’t just rush out and buy one. It took a little convincing. I had been harboring a kind of neurotic block against owning a cheapo kiddie pool, some knot of deep, class-based conditioning. On the one hand, I think I considered it frivolous, broadly unbefitting adulthood, declassé, desperado posh, this idea of a grown-ass man nursing a tumbler of grocery-store rosé in three feet of water because lol loser can’t afford a real pool. It was the sort of thing, I secretly thought, you should only see on the cover of a rockabilly album. On the other hand, I suspect I had some long-forgotten revenant subscription to a principled disgruntlement (maybe punk rock, maybe puritanical) with the traditional forms of suburban comfort, whose mode has always entailed industrializing your personal environment — that is, enlisting outlandishly resource-gobbling systems to make our lives a little bit cooler, wetter, funner. (Think of the elaborate machinery that runs our air conditioners, waters our yards, filters our pools, powers our digital home entertainment suites.) A cheapo kiddie pool was a venial gateway sin to a morally queasy realm. 

I got over myself hella quick when it started getting hot. Thirty dollars later, I’m  chinchilliiiiiing in my backyard, feeling like I’m rightly participating in a revered Vegas ritual. Today I endorse buying a kiddie pool, and encourage all adults to do so. Here’s one little trick to getting over any feelings of juvenile atavism that may prick your overdeveloped conscience: Don’t think of it as a pool per se. Instead, think of it as an outdoor waterbed, or a pleasingly puffy chaise lounge that a race of mer-people gifted our species in a gesture of fraternity and goodwill. Better yet, a kiddie pool’s pleasures provide all the summery, evocative swoon of a legit in-ground pool without the expense and infrastructural intensity — the oneiric heave and sway of water hugging your body; lounging afterwards in your damp trunks in the skin-dazzling honey pockets of late afternoon warmth; that lazy, sun-drunk, waterlogged waddle to the fridge for another round of beers; that bracing blast of sunblock to your back as you prepare for another meditative soak. O portal to a parallel timescape of permanent three-day weekends, bottomless screwdrivers, and endless summer laze, cheapo kiddie pool, this ode is for you.

As a longtime journalist in Southern Nevada, native Las Vegan Andrew Kiraly has served as a reporter covering topics as diverse as health, sports, politics, the gaming industry and conservation. He joined Desert Companion in 2010, where he has helped steward the magazine to become a vibrant monthly publication that has won numerous honors for its journalism, photography and design, including several Maggie Awards.