Community Care During COVID: Community Support and Social Connection in Louisville

As we face down coronavirus, The Humana Foundation’s partners are hard at work, supporting the health of their communities. Organizations receiving Strategic Community Investment Program (SCIP) or Community Partner Program (CPP) funding are pivoting, diverting their resources and energy to where they are most needed. We are sharing stories highlighting our partners work during the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic, today featuring a CPP partner in Louisville – Play Cousins Collective.


Play Cousins Collective now offers its popular Black Book Joy via Facebook video events

We are all feeling the effects of COVID-19 quarantine and safety measures. Our lives have changed, and we are all adjusting to our new reality. For some of us, our new reality includes new challenges like entertaining and educating our children and helping them cope with uncertainty.

These new challenges are an opportunity to make meaningful changes to the ways we interact with each other and support our communities. At The Humana Foundation, we are very excited to see the ways our communities are positively adjusting to our new reality, and we continue to look for new ways to support our partners and carry out our mission of greater health equity for all.

In Louisville, Play Cousins Collective is a shining example of how we can and must change how we approach community support and social connection right now. Play Cousin’s mission is to provide meaningful children’s programming at community events and meetings to ensure parents can organize and advocate for their families without the barrier of childcare.

Play Cousins stepped up their online programming and remote connections to provide families with the children’s programming, parent connection and mental health support needed during a pandemic. They moved three of their most popular programs online:

  • Black Book Joy, a story time hour with arts and crafts centered on books featuring diverse characters, is available via Facebook.
  • Tummy Time, a support group for parents, caregivers and expecting parents under the age of two, now is offered via a private Facebook group.
  • Soul Sisters, a support and healing circle for women facilitated by Black mental healthcare providers, is now also offered via a private Facebook group.

Play Cousins Collective’s Tummy Time helps parents connect with children under the age of two and is launching a new online game to keep up engagement and connection virtually

"Black Book Joy brings story time to our living room. With the closing of our local libraries, having this program is important to us. It allows us to stay in touch with our friends and still feel connected during this time of distancing. Black Book Joy exposes us to different book titles that we are able to add to our home library. Also, Black Book Joy goes beyond book discussion. We have enjoyed the engagement activity connected to the story. It is a resource that we look forward to each time!! Thank you for all you do to enrich our community and our families!"

Bianca Randall, Play Cousins Collective member

By offering programming online, Play Cousins is able to provide community support and social connections desperately needed by families quarantined at home.

Play Cousin’s work during the pandemic goes deeper than online programming. They are organizing care packages to provide basic supplies and care items for the community, and they have increased efforts to support and amplify Black-owned businesses via social media. Play Cousin’s All in Black Business Directory, available on Facebook at #AllinBlackBusinessDirectory, features businesses that are taking special steps to take care of the community by producing products like face masks that are critical to the health and safety of the community.


Are you looking for ways to help those impacted by COVID-19? Consider donating to Feeding America’s COVID-19 Response Fund, established to help the millions of Americans who will turn to food banks for much-needed support via emergency food boxes, drive-thru pantries and long-term support. If you would like to help your community, look for local emergency funds. If you are a Humana employee and want to make a charitable donation or volunteer to aid COVID-19 relief and recovery efforts, please visit Humana Together, Humana’s internal resource for finding and tracking volunteer and giving opportunities. And, if you have volunteer opportunities related to COVID-19 to share with Humana employees, please create a profile with Benevity, the platform that powers Humana Together.

In Louisville, the One Louisville: COVID-19 Response Fund is asking for donations so it may deploy financial support to households, businesses and nonprofits working at the frontlines of the Louisville-area COVID-19 outbreak. The Norton Healthcare Foundation Community COVID-19 Fund, in partnership with the Community Foundation of Louisville, is also seeking support for Norton Healthcare’s work to stop coronavirus spread and to treat those impacted by it.

CategoriesBold GoalCommunity Partners ProgramEducation and early Childhood DevelopmentLouisvilleSocial Connectedness
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