The past two weeks have been like no other and we recognized that none of us could have prepared for something like this – even those of us who regularly operate in emergency situations. Our mantra right now is simple: Stay Well, Stay Calm, Stay Kind.
Currently, we have no confirmed cases of COVID-19 among clients or staff. Given our shelter environment, we know that prevention is our most effective tool at managing the COVID-19 pandemic.
Our Current Needs:
• Low-risk foods (e.g. granola bars, canned tuna, fruit cups), learn more at calgarydropin.ca/continuedsupport
• Staff – we are urgently recruiting cooks, front-line workers, security and custodial staff, apply online at calgarydropin.ca/careers
• Medical Volunteers – we are recruiting medical volunteers to assist with secondary screening at our shelters, please visit calgarydropin.ca/covid19-health-services
*New* March 27, 2020 Updates
• We have opened our 24/7 satellite shelter for 56 people, and we have helped 21 people move into this space as of March 26.
• We’ve begun screening clients for symptoms before they enter the building at our front gate, this is another preventative measure to make sure we don’t have an outbreak in the shelter. This is why our gate is currently closed. Thank you to Safeworks, CUPS, Alberta Health Services and the several volunteer medical professionals who have stepped up to support us.
• We have limited our drop-in and meal service program to people who sleep at the emergency shelter only. We’ve been told there will be other meal programs established to address food insecurity, but we must reduce our shelter numbers in order to address social distancing.
• We are continuing to find more ways to reduce the number of people inside our main shelter.
• In the past 7 days, we have averaged 616 people sleeping in the shelter every night. On March 25, we saw our lowest numbers in a while with 575 people sleeping in the shelter overnight.
March 20, 2020 Updates
• We have increased our cleaning schedule prioritizing high risk areas
• We have closed non-essential programs and services to decrease the amount of people in our buildings and repurpose staff to priority services
• We have cancelled external volunteer programming for all opportunities, with the exception of medical volunteers which we are actively recruiting
• We have adjusted our donation program and have acquired C Can containers to quarantine donations for 14 days before they’re in circulation
• We have put hand-washing stations throughout the building thanks to a generous donation from Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC)
• We have a designated observation wing for clients with suspected symptoms of COVID-19 until medical professionals can come in to make an assessment and determine next steps.