UCO staff continues close communication with health department officials and City leadership to ensure that we follow recommended Covid-19 prevention practices. We thank the leaders and staff of First Congregational Church for working with us in establishing operational guidelines for our modified drop-in center, with the health and safety of everyone as our priority.
Today (March 15), our staff, three Board members and four volunteers prepared and served a simple sloppy joe lunch to 169 guests. Because we maintained a maximum of 50 people on our campus at any one time, many people elected to take their lunches to go. People who chose to eat on-site were directed to monitored rest rooms to wash their hands before entering the dining room. Guests were given a half-hour to finish their meals in order to facilitate a reasonable flow of people. Everyone adjusted their expectations and, In the words of our Board member Martha – “It went really well.” Guests were grateful to have our center open, considering the closures of many of the other meal centers and libraries in Long Beach.
Last Sunday (March 8), we had a lighter crowd with 123 guests and the help of about 40 volunteers. Thank you to our dear friend David for bringing walkers and canes for our guests.
During the past two weeks, staff and I have been busy working with clients who were recently housed and those who are working on securing permanent housing. With assistance from a Quality of Life officer and our estate sale planner Betsy, we moved two beds and housewares for a single-mom and her four children who had just moved into their apartment. We received much needed pots and pans to pass on to seniors who had recently moved into their housing.
We helped a recently housed senior by paying his Edison bill after his power had been turned off because he had been assaulted and robbed. We also provided partial rent assistance for a client who had his hours reduced at his job.
We continue to help people by giving them Long Beach transit bus passes.
In light of the Covid-19 emergency, we are unsure of our drop-in center’s hours and modified services in the coming Sundays. We hope to continue providing a place for people who are living unsheltered to wash their hands and eat lunch on Sunday afternoons.
Thank you for your support and please consider donating to our organization at www.ucodic.org.