One Year Later
Published on March 17, 2021
by Shannon Bock, CCRI Executive Director
As we locked our doors a year ago today, we assumed we would be closing our office and quarantining for a couple of weeks. In a million years, I didn’t think we would still be talking about COVID 12 months later!
This last year has been quite the ride and I want to thank everyone who supported us as we navigated through our first (and hopefully last) pandemic.
I will never forget sending 70 administrative staff to work from home and beginning the challenge of ensuring our 500 front line workers felt safe going to work. Our nurses and supervisors fielded questions at all hours of the day and our caregivers earned the title of heroes.
As COVID cases were rising at an alarming rate throughout our community we slimmed back staffing to limit exposure. Our admin staff also stepped in to provide care in our homes hit hard with illness and without hesitation, our team incorporated additional duties within their roles. Our caregivers stepped up to be entertainers, artists, teachers, chefs and hair stylists. They were the bright lights who went to work during some pretty dark days. They soothed, reassured and comforted people when they were scared. They found ways to explain why staying at home and not working or getting to see family and friends was the best choice. When work programs closed, we staffed an additional 1100 hours per week, while in the middle of a pandemic and a workforce crisis. I’m so grateful to lead this group of heroes.
When COVID caused forced isolation and a break from routine, our Life Enrichment Coordinator armed herself with educational and recreational activities that could be done at home, thanks to the generosity of our donors. Thanks to technology, we provided virtual games, adaptive cooking and music classes and good old virtual gatherings.
For the people in our mental health program, not being able to meet with their therapist and mental health practitioners was extremely difficult and in some cases, caused increased mental health symptoms. Our team quickly implemented Telehealth which offered a critical avenue to sustain mental and behavioral health services.
When I look back at 2020, I will remember it as the year that required significant creativity and grace. We worked our hardest and moved forward stronger, more resilient and confident that we can keep the folks we support safe.
As we move forward in this pandemic, we are extremely grateful that the clients and team members who choose to, have the opportunity to be vaccinated.
As always, thanks for your support, kind notes and confidence in our work.