Asheville Chamber of Commerce survey results

New county fund to support individual­s, businesses during COVID-19

For individuals who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19, the fund could pay for “life-essential needs” such as utilities and mortgages. Businesses with fewer than 50 employees could receive low-interest loans of up to $10,000 to sustain operations until they could reopen or get additional support from the federal government.

Health care workers wearing masks

Hospitals brace for COVID-19 cases, clamp down on visitors

Area hospitals have taken somewhat differing approaches to the question of whether to stop performing elective surgeries and other medical procedures. There are worries nationally about whether there will be enough personal protective gear like masks and gloves for health care workers, but hospitals in the Asheville area say they have good supplies for now.

Health roundup: Film highlights uninsured WNC residents

A new documentary film produced by the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network’s Medicaid Covers Us campaign highlights two Western North Carolina residents who lack access to health insurance. Also in this week’s health and wellness roundup: Plenty of news from AdventHealth Hendersonville, Pardee hosts a celebration of life and a new local wellness podcast.

Weeping Planet Earth costume

Green in brief: Asheville declares climate emergency, Duke opens Arden gas plant

“The loss of life and damage caused by current global warming demonstrates that the Earth is already too hot for safety,” states the document approved by a 6-0 vote of Asheville City Council on Jan. 28. “Restoring a safe and stable climate requires an emergency climate mobilization on a scale not seen since World War II.”

Give!Local 2019 wraps up banner year for grassroots fundraisin­g

A heartfelt thanks is in order, to the 414 individuals who donated to 2019’s Give!Local partner nonprofits, generating a total impact of $178,804. Every dollar goes directly to local nonprofits making a difference in the WNC community. Mountain Xpress’ fifth annual campaign to raise funds and awareness for local organizations benefiting the community has nearly […]

Jewish Farmer Network cultivates ancient agricultur­al wisdom

Despite WNC’s history of agricultural knowledge and abundance, the legacy of Jewish farming — and its deep wisdom surrounding food security, land ownership and community building — has remained shrouded in relative obscurity. The Fairview-based Yesod Farm + Kitchen is working to change that narrative.

Town Branch from Depot Street Bridge

RiverLink’­s RAD Watershed Plan addresses Asheville’­s most impaired waterway

Funded by a $78,000 grant from the N.C. Clean Water Management Fund and a $28,000 grant from the Pigeon River Fund, the yearlong assessment of the watershed’s health will include water quality monitoring, identification of pollution sources and suggestions for infrastructure changes. The goal is to provide long-term, meaningful protection for waterways such as Town Branch, also known as Nasty Branch.