The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, January 20, 2021 1:00 am

Coronavirus roundup

Volunteer Center aids with vaccines

The Volunteer Center is partnering with the Allen County Department of Health to provide volunteers for the COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Memorial Coliseum, 4000 Parnell Ave.

Volunteers are being used to help escort seniors requiring wheelchair assistance from curbside to inside Expo IV to receive their shot.

The clinic is open by appointment only to those currently eligible as determined by the Indiana State Department of Health.

Go to or call 2-1-1 daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to make an appointment. No walk-ins will be accepted. Currently, people age 70 or older are eligible.

“This is such a critical endeavor for our community and we are happy to support the efforts of the Allen County Department of Health to control the spread of COVID-19,” said Ani Etter, Volunteer Center executive director.

People interested in volunteering may sign up at and click “I Want To Volunteer” to complete a profile and have access to this and other volunteer opportunities in the community.

$37,000 grant aimed at refugees

Amani Family Services, Inc. has received a $37,000 grant through the Youth Program Resilience Fund of Lilly Endowment Inc.

These funds, combined with others, will allow the agency to continue pursuing its mission of partnering with immigrant and refugee youth and families affected by COVID-19 to promote safety, encourage personal growth and foster a spirit of belonging in Allen County, according to a news release.

In 2020, Amani served 2,114 individuals, many of whom have been forced to flee their homeland as a result of war, violence and cultural upheaval.

As such, significant portions of these individuals routinely experience a high prevalence of emotional and behavioral disorders such as depression, anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder.

Amani Family Services also has been awarded a $20,000 grant from the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation to be used to partially support Amani's Substance Use and Community Support Programs, which provide mental health assessments, counseling, bi-cultural adjustment groups and substance use support services to immigrants and refugees residing in Allen County.

Thus far, these funds have allowed Amani to continue to provide substance use and mental health therapy services to clients in spite of barriers incurred by COVID-19.

Easterseals gives vaccine to clients

Easterseals Arc of Northeast Indiana began administering COVID-19 vaccinations Tuesday to individuals receiving the agency's services.

The vaccination clinic at the agency's Coldwater Road headquarters is a pilot program for a state initiative to improve access to vaccines for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

These individuals are in a high-risk group for getting COVID-19 and often have medical conditions that increase the risk of complications from the virus.

Individuals in Easterseals Arc's group homes and supported living program were given information on the vaccine in written and video form, and they or their guardians were asked to submit consent forms indicating whether they want to receive the vaccine.

Warning issued for stimulus scams

The Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation Division is warning Indiana taxpayers about a new wave of COVID-19-related scams as the agency delivers the second round of economic impact payments.

In the last several months, IRS-CI has seen a variety of economic impact payment scams and other financial schemes designed to steal money and personal information from taxpayers.

Criminals are taking advantage of the second round of economic impact payments – as well as the approaching tax filing season – to trick taxpayers out of their money.

“Criminals will look for any opportunity to take what they are not entitled to and this is no exception,” said Tamera Cantu, acting special agent in charge of IRS Criminal Investigation at the Chicago field office. “This payment is meant to help those that are struggling to get by as a result of the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.

'Be wary of any phone calls, emails, or text messages asking for your personal information or offering a deal that seems too good to be true.”

– Journal Gazette

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