While IPH staff are well-trained in handling crises, thinking on our feet, and acting quickly in unexpected circumstances, nothing could have prepared us for the unprecedented challenges brought about by COVID-19. However, incredible teamwork, patience and cooperation from our guests, as well as tremendous community support, has allowed us to navigate the uncertainty thoughtfully and effectively while maintaining focus on the health and safety of all.
The homeless members of our community, especially those living outside, have faced their own unique challenges, including limited access to things that many of us take for granted, including places with soap and water for hand washing, showers, hand sanitizer, masks, laundry facilities, even basic information about the virus and ways to protect oneself. To mitigate these challenges and ensure the most vulnerable members of the community continued to have safe places to be, particularly where they could address their health and hygiene needs, both Healthy Connections and Community Connections have remained open. Across programs, staff are providing emotional support, are continuing to model good hygiene practices and social distancing, and are ensuring that guests have up to date information.
While we are not yet out of the dark, we are forever grateful to all who have helped us get this far. Thank you to meal donors, companies who have generously donated supplies, friends who have checked in and offered support, our dedicated staff who have continued to show up and do extraordinary work, and our guests who have shown flexibility and patience as we’ve all moved forward together.
With Sincere Thanks,
Janine Robitaille on behalf of IPH guests, staff and Board of Directors.