COVID-19: Broward County Updates, Thursday, April 9
| April 2020
Here's your daily roundup with what to know and what you may have missed about the COVID-19 pandemic in South Florida.
Thursday, April 9
- If you have questions, need further guidance, or have symptoms, call the Health Department at 1-866-779-6121 [Florida Department of Health]
- There are 15,698 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Florida. 323 people have died. [Florida Department of Health]
- There are 2,365 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Broward County. 60 people have died. [NBC6]
- The UpCycle Project, a Miami-based sustainable fashion platform, is using resources donated to the UpCycle Foundation to create homemade cloth masks. The organization is repurposing a donation of 7,000 cotton t-shirts for the project, which is enough material for 12,000 masks. The foundation is also employing a team of seamstresses who have lost their jobs as a result of the pandemic.
- People across the state are placing teddy bears in their windows for children to find on neighborhood “scavenger hunts” during times of quarantine and isolation. [NY Times]
- Gov. Ron DeSantis has issued a state-wide “stay-at-home” order, effective for the next 30 days. Click here for a list of essential business exceptions. [The Washington Post]
- A drive-thru testing center has been set up at the FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. [Palm Beach Post]
- Tri Rail is offering an 18-train schedule every two hours on weekdays, a 12-train schedule with three hour frequency on weekends, and has suspended fares.
- Brightline service is suspended until further notice.
- FLITE Center has created and will serve as an Emergency Relief Center for the Transitional Independent Living (TIL) System of Care Community. FLITE Center is a centralized facility in Broward County for dependent youth to learn needed skills for independent living. The Relief Center will be located on FLITE Center’s Campus at 5201 NW 33rd Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. It will provide necessary emergency resources for any youth enrolled in the TIL System of Care, which includes youth with special and behavioral needs; trafficking victims; and people who are unemployed, homeless or dealing with an unfortunate situation. FLITE Center staff will serve as the frontline for emergency assistance at the Relief Center. The pantry will be stocked by donations, which includes non-perishable food, cleaning supplies, gift cards and monetary donations. For more info, www.flitecenter.org/needs. (FLITE Center)
- Artist, conservationist, scientist and entrepreneur Guy Harvey and his daughter Jessica, project manager for the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF), have introduced more than 25 free educational short videos to keep families entertained and educated at home while self-isolating during the COVID-19 pandemic. As well as this, kids of all ages can enjoy virtual marine-inspired art instruction sessions on Facebook Live Monday through Friday at 11 a.m., where Harvey will share his art techniques, what inspires him, answer viewer questions and more. (GuyHarvey)
- Tropical Smoothie Café has pledged to donate 100,000 smoothies to healthcare workers and first responders during the coronavirus pandemic as part of its #InItTogether campaign. The fast-casual concept has delivered about 20,000 smoothies and counting to more than 20 states and 30 markets this week. First responders and hospital workers who would like to receive a smoothie can contact their local Tropical Smoothie Café to arrange a drop off to wherever they are. (PR News Wire)
- United Way is committed to ensuring that residents in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties have access to basic everyday needs amid COVID-19. Through the NextEra Energy Foundation, Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) is gifting the nationwide non-profit $300,000 for its tri-county organizations. United Way of Broward County will use the funds to help neighbors in need, including food assistance for local elderly populations; its funded food banks and in-need families; and emergency financial assistance to those affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
- B Hotels & Resorts—including properties in Fort Lauderdale and Disney Springs—have extended a rate of $79 per night plus waived resort fee for healthcare professionals and first responders; National Guard members, law enforcement; state or federal government. employees; airline crew members (at B Resort & Spa); journalists and others responding to COVID-19; displaced residents, visitors or college students; and people unable to return to their home due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, including anyone who had to leave their home due to an emergency. (B Hotels & Resorts)
- The U.S. Small Business Administration announced changes to assist borrowers who are still paying back SBA loans from previous disasters. This means that deferments through Dec. 31, will be automatic, and anyone borrowing home and business disaster loans don't have to contact SBA for deferments.
- All Florida state parks have been ordered to close. (FL State Parks)
- Read our article on local restaurants offering delivery, takeout and curbside pickup.
This article is being updated.