While we’re still not in the clear, solid planning and a stellar staff continue to serve St. Vincent de Paul Louisville well during this worldwide pandemic. We’d like to give you a brief update on what’s happening on campus.
With facilities like the Open Hand Kitchen and day shelters closed, finding restroom facilities has become a challenge for the unsheltered population so we rented portable toilets for the south side of campus. We were unable to find a companion hand-washing station, so the maintenance department repurposed an old desk and sink to create a homemade hand-washing station next to the portable toilets, complete with running water, soap, and hand sanitizer. Necessity is the mother of invention.
The Open Hand Kitchen staff, program managers, case managers, program aides, Food Pantry volunteers, and our maintenance team risk exposure daily but continue to serve our clients.
The Open Hand Kitchen continues to serve take-away meals two times a day to anyone that needs lunch or dinner. No date has been set as to when dine-in service will resume.
Unlike other parts of the country, our food pantry inventory is better than normal thanks to the folks at Dare to Care. Thankfully, neighborhood residents are using the food pantry often as the loss of wages is sure to be contributing to the risk of food insecurity.
Dare to Care has also provided food boxes that the St. Vincent de Paul Conferences can deliver on home visits.
Our case managers have started to work from campus on an alternating schedule so that Healthy at Work protocols can be followed, allowing for some direct client contact and case file updating.
In partnership with Phoenix Health Care for the Homeless and Bluewater Labs, we were able to offer free COVID-19 testing to Ozanam Inn guests and staff late last month. We hope to provide more frequent testing and expand to include all clients in the near future.
Thrift Store donations resumed on May 20 and the response has been overwhelming. Thank you. The stores opened their doors to shoppers on May 26, breaking a record for one-day sales.
During the downtime at the Family Success Center, Program Manager Julio Anthony developed a summer program that would keep the kids safe and help prepare them for the fall school year, however that may look.
Thank you to all the donors, volunteers, staff, first responders, medical personnel, and partner agencies that have been there for us so that we may continue to serve those that need our help more than ever.