By Caitlyn Gudmundsen, Senior Manager Program Development and Outreach
Today’s Front Line Hero is Samaritas and its committed staff who are working hard to meet the changing needs of those they serve during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Samaritas has more than 60 program sites in 40 cities in Michigan. The organization offers several vital services with robust programming, including adoption, foster care, senior and affordable living, and disabilities services. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly created challenges for these programs, but Samaritas is adapting to meet the community’s continued needs.
Samaritas purchased 160 iPads for seniors and children in foster care to stay in touch with their families during social distancing. Samaritas also received donated iPads from the community to contribute to this effort to keep families connected virtually. Acquiring adequate protective equipment continues to be a challenge for many health and human services agencies, so Samaritas commissioned a dedicated supply team to explore various avenues to purchase protective equipment for staff.Samaritas was grateful to have hundreds of hand-made masks donated by the community while they waited for supplies to arrive!
The direct support staff are truly committed to serve during this difficult time! The Samaritas administration reported that the staff in their senior living communities are seeing fewer call-offs and changes in schedules than they have ever seen. The staff at disabilities group homes are finding great ways to engage the residents, including making cards and sending them to hospitals to thank healthcare workers for their support in the community.
Thank you to Samaritas for your extraordinary service during the COVID-19 pandemic, and for your staff’s continued dedication to the community!