How to Get Help

Find important information and resources in Lake County to help you, your family, or organization during this unprecedented time. We will continue to add more resources to this page as we learn about them.

Important
If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, follow these steps to help protect yourself and other people in your home and community.

Loans for Lake County Businesses

U.S. Small Business Administration

If you own a small business, run a private non-profit, or are self-employed in Lake County facing financial hardship due to coronavirus (COVID-19), you may be eligible for a low-interest disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The application filing deadline is Dec. 21, 2020.  
 
Apply online and receive additional disaster assistance information on the SBA website, or call the SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information.

Fact sheet 

Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Hospitality Emergency Grant Program

This program offers grants to bars and restaurants with a valid license to serve food or liquor which generated revenues of less than $1 million in 2019, and to hotels with a valid license (hotels, motels other lodging establishments) which generated revenues of less than $8 million in 2019. Learn more

Other Resources

Small Business Survival Guide for Northeastern Illinois

Breakfast and Lunch for Children

Even though schools are closed, many schools are still offering breakfast and lunch to feed the many children in Lake County who depend on the meals. View an interactive map in which you can type in your address and find the nearest school in your area serving breakfast/lunch. Click on any dot on the map to view the address and a link to more info for that school district.

Childcare

Call 888-228-1146, a dedicated helpline to connect essential worker families to emergency childcare. You can also find childcare in your area by using the COVID-19 Emergency Provider Search

Food Pantries

Northern Illinois Food Bank partners with feeding programs across 13 counties to serve people needing food. Use the locator map to find local food pantries or soup kitchens.

Unemployment Insurance

Unemployment benefits may be available to some individuals whose unemployment is attributable to COVID-19. The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) recently adopted emergency rules to try to make the unemployment insurance system as responsive to the current situation as possible. 

Visit the IDES website for more information

Utilities

ComEd

ComEd is suspending disconnects for customers unable to pay their bills and waiving new late payments charges through at least May 1st. They will be working with customers on a case-by-case basis to establish payment arrangements and to identify energy assistance options to address specific needs. For information, please call 1-800-334-7661.

North Shore Gas

North Shore Gas is offering bill payment arrangement options and financial assistance. If you are having trouble paying your bill, call 866-556-6004 to discuss a payment plan or learn about financial assistance. It is also suspending disconnects for all customers, except in the case of natural gas leaks or unsafe conditions, and is waiving late payment charges. 

Lake County Public Works

The Lake County Public Works Department has issued a moratorium on shutoffs and a cessation of late and penalty fees beginning 3/17/2020 until the state’s disaster proclamation has been lifted. Please contact pwbilling@lakecountyil.gov for more information.

Veterans Assistance Commission 

Any Lake County Veteran in need of assistance with housing is urged to contact the Lake County Veteran’s Assistance Commission for help. Call (847) 377-3344 or email veterans@lakecountyil.gov.

Call 211 to Get Connected to the Help You Need 

If you need help finding any social service, including resources for finding food, healthcare, paying your utility bills, mental health services, etc., please reach out to United Way of Lake County’s free, confidential 211 service through any of the following: