Be Well and Stay Connected: Resources and Support
The Office of Faculty Affairs (OFA) is open and continues to serve as a resource to support faculty within the BSD. Your health – including your mental health – is important. Please visit this site often as we are actively adding resources and developing opportunities to engage remotely. We welcome your questions, additional resources, and ideas for being well and staying connected. Contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
NEW: The BSD Office of Diversity & Inclusion has launched Nourishment Through Narrative: Digital Community Building. Storytelling can help connect us, facilitate teachable moments, enhance understanding, and help reduce stigma. This is a space for our community to share stories of resilience, strength, heartbreak, isolation, and empowerment.
Support your Mental Health
- Covid-19 Support Group, open to anyone in the University of Chicago, this grief support group requires a six-week commitment from 6 to 7 pm every Tuesday, from August 18 through September 22. Sessions occur virtually via Zoom. Tell your doctor you are interested or email Jessica Jacoby, LCSW, at email@example.com. Insurance will be considered as a co-pay may be required.
- Around-the-clock support to help manage stress and anxiety is provided by Perspectives, our employee assistnce program. Call 800-456-6327, visit Perspectives Online, or connect via the Spark App (username: UNI500 / password: perspectives).
- Calming Breathing Methods – tips for getting comfortable in your mask
- Parenting During a Pandemic: Strategies for Sustainability – cognitive-behavioral strategies that have been demonstrated to be helpful during this trying time
- The apps Calm and Headspace are each offering a selection of guided meditations for free. Headspace is also offering its premium app, Headspace Plus, for free to healthcare workers.
- Ten Percent Happier is offering a free live guided meditation every weekday at 2pm Central, a collection of other resources, and free access to their paid app for healthcare workers.
- Woebot is a free app based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
- A Chaplain is available 24/7. Page 7008 to reach the Chaplain on site. Video and phone options are available. Contact Marsha Sumner, Spiritual Care Manager: 773-702-6986 or Marsha.firstname.lastname@example.org. Care of the human spirit through debriefing, sharing, emotional support; help exploring moral and ethical dimensions of healthcare and related stress; religious specific support, such as prayer, available.
- COVID Coach App created by the Veterans Administration and available to everyone. Trackers to check your mood, measure your growth toward personal goals and visualize progress over time.
Resources for Parents
- The Family Resource Center is offering two free classes and a Zoom discussion group:
- Storytime with Laura. Wednesdays, June 24 – August 26, from 11 – 11:30 a.m. These sessions combine thematic stories with songs, props, movement, and the occasional puppet. The target age is children 2 – 5 years old, though all ages are welcome.
- Food from Around the World. Thursdays, June 25 – August 27, 3:30 – 4 p.m. Cook with your children in your own kitchen while imagining you are visiting and sharing food with friends in faraway places. The target age is children 3 – 7 years old.
- Parenting in the Pandemic. Dates/times TBD by participants. Quarantine has led to many challenges for UChicago faculty as parents and scholars. Participate in a group discussion with your colleagues to share concerns and ideas and offer support.
For more information and session meeting links, email Laura Macgregor at email@example.com or Lizanne Phalen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Bright Horizons – UChicago Child Development Center – Drexel CenterHours: M-F: 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Contact: Tierra Burton at 773-256-0000
Ages Served: Infants, Toddlers, Preschool, Kindergarten Prep
Serving children of faculty members, other academic appointees, staff, students and postdoctoral researchers at the University of Chicago and University of Chicago Medicine who are essential employees required to go into work due to COVID-19 efforts. Contact the Center directly (Tierra Burton) in advance as they are experiencing daily changes to availability.
- UC Moms is a resource group that advocates for and provides resources to parents across the University. The group currently meets via Zoom on the third Friday of each month from noon – 1 p.m., though the timing is subject to change. The group’s upcoming meeting topics include “Keeping Your Kids Safe Through the Summer” and “Speaking with Your Kids About Race.” For more information and to join the UC Moms group, email Laura Merkin at Laura.Markin@uchospitals.edu.
- Virtual Babysitting Program: The Office of the Provost launched a virtual babysitting and tutoring program during the Spring Quarter to support faculty members working from home and caring for young children. The program will continue through the Summer Quarter. Please complete this request form so we can connect you with a UChicago undergraduate student sitter. For more information, contact Liv Leader at email@example.com.
- Finding a Nanny, Daycare, or Summer Camp: As childcare centers begin reopening, many families may feel more comfortable finding a smaller daycare or hiring a nanny than sending their child to daycare. Sarah Diwan at the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club is a great resource for locating a nanny or babysitter in Hyde Park area. The organization also advertises activities on Facebook. Perspectives offers a similar service focused on Chicago’s North Side and the suburbs.
- Community Events: The Hyde Park Neighborhood Club has moved many of its events online. Get details and Zoom links for Spanish story time, art classes, and music classes on their calendar.
- Connect with Other Parents Online: Faculty families can connect with each other and learn more about family-oriented campus programming through the Academics with Young Children Network and the Academics with Young Children Facebook page. The Student Parent Listserv (not just for student parents!) and the Hyde Park Parent Support Network are active lists in the University community.
- View additional resources available to the BSD community, including child care center locators and referrals.
Move Your Body
- Alison Aske with Inner Light Pilates and Yoga provides a free community Pilates/Yoga/Movement session each weekday at 10:45am: https://zoom.us/j/2672098582 / Meeting ID: 267 209 8582. All levels, family friendly, blending the core focused exercises of Pilates with the stretching of yoga and the freedom of modern dance.
- Dance Forever provides 1 month of free daily classes to the UChicago and UCM community. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
- From boot camp to yoga, YMCA offers free online fitness classes.
- Planet Fitness is offering free online workouts on Facebook Live
- Down Dog is giving free access to their collection of yoga and fitness apps to healthcare workers.
- Peloton is offering free 30-day trial to their fitness app.
- Kids can join you in enjoying yoga with Cosmic Kids classes on YouTube.
Have Fun at Home
- Resources and activities for families compiled by UChicago’s myCHOICE program
- NPR publishes an extensive list of daily live virtual concerts, organized by musical genre.
- The Metropolitan Opera is streaming a different opera each night for free.
- The National Theatre is streaming a production a week each Thursday.
- You can stream Broadway musicals for free for one week with a trial from the service BroadwayHD, and Andrew Lloyd Webber is streaming a production of one of his musicals on YouTube every week.
- If a dance party is more your style, check out the DJs streaming live sets on Instagram.
- If you are missing sports, the NHL, NBA, and NFL are all offering limited-time free access to classic games and other content.
- The website bored.solutions collects many more ideas and challenges to try.
Feed your Brain
- Take a virtual tour of Chicago’s museums, libraries, and cultural institutions from home, or “travel” further afield with virtual tours of famous museums around the world.
- Ready to learn a new skill? Fender is offering 50% off guitar lessons, including a 14-day trial.
- If you’d rather explore the visual arts, you can stream more than 400 episodes of Bob Ross’s The Joy of Painting on YouTube.
- Class Central has created a collection of more than 450 free online courses from Ivy League institutions. UChicago faculty offer several free online courses as well.
- Springer Nature has made more than 500 online textbooks temporarily available for free. There are also many open-access JSTOR books and journals accessible to the public.
- Children’s book author Mo Willems streams a daily lunchtime doodle
Help your Community
- Support Chicago small businesses by shopping local from home.
- The University has compiled ways to help others during the crisis, including health care workers, South Side small businesses, and food insecure members of the community.
- University of Chicago Medicine offers more ways to give back and support the community.
Free, temporary housing for UCM/BSD faculty and staff who must work on site; priority given to those in high-risk areas or who have vulnerable family members at home. COVID-19 Housing Intake Form
Additional Employee Resources
The information on this website is by no means comprehensive. This website is meant for information only and not intended to be an official endorsement of any particular program or resource. As the public health crisis is rapidly evolving, so too is the availability of these resources.