A Message from CEO, Scott Short on RiseBoro's Response to COVID-19
At RiseBoro, we care deeply about the safety, security, and well-being of the communities we serve and our employees. In light of the COVID-19 health crisis, there are immediate changes we are making to our programs and services to ensure we adhere to guidelines while still caring for our most vulnerable. We are also fully aware that the current crisis is unprecedented and will require unprecedented support and leadership from our government partners in order to mount an adequate response.In terms of RiseBoro services, below are some key updates that have been made in response to the crisis:
Congregate and group services at Senior Centers are suspended until further notice. "Grab and Go" meals will be provided at each center (check your local center for schedule).
Our Youth Center and school-based programs are closed to the public and our Youth and Education programs are transitioning to a remote learning and support model, which will be in place by Monday 3/23.
Our Empowerment services are seeing clients remotely and by appointment only.
Our Case Management services are seeing clients remotely and by appointment only.
Our Housing services are seeing tenants remotely and by appointment only.
Our Health Promotion and Food Justice services are seeing clients remotely and by appointment only.
Our Meals-On-Wheels and Homecare programs continue to operate as normal.
We also intend to work hard with city and state officials to redeploy resources to where they are most needed, including:
Funding and Contract support: It's critical that government funders of programs for those in need agree to pay for the value of the contracts through the end of the fiscal year, minimally.
Flexibility around contract deliverables is critical in these unprecedented times, and non-profits providing frontline services need assurances that they will be paid in full by their government funders.
Flexibility for Resources: It is critical that we are able to redeploy resources as is needed by communities based on what we are seeing on the ground. This discretion to redeploy resources without penalty is critical to our providing the best possible services. For instance, if we have education workers who can assist with childcare services, thus allowing Home Healthcare Workers to keep working, we need the flexibility to make that happen.
As national stimulus packages are being discussed in association with COVID-19, we need assurance that stimulus will assist more than corporate entities, but instead focus on getting assistance into the hands of workers in communities—those people who are losing their livelihoods based on the virus and won't be able to pay for basic necessities such as rent or food.
Flexibility and creativity around loosening of rules and regulations that govern assistance for housing, food, health and other social services will be critical.
We will continue to make sure we are caring for our most vulnerable, and we thank our employees for their courageous efforts on the frontline. I will be monitoring the situation closely, and taking any and all actions necessary for the health and wellbeing of our communities and our employees.