Volunteers of America Delaware Valley Combats COVID-19

As communities across the nation address the unique challenges posed by COVID-19, Volunteers of America Delaware Valley (VOADV) staff have been working tirelessly over the past few months to minimize all associated risks of the virus for staff, clients and the communities we serve.

Every year, VOADV provides essential programs and services to approximately 13,000 of our communities’ most vulnerable individuals– ranging from homelessness, reentry, veterans assistance and affordable housing services, to specialized programs for addiction, traumatic brain injury and/or intellectual disabilities.

While COVID-19 is afflicting thousands of people across the globe, many of the individuals served by VOADV are at greater risk of being both impacted and infected by COVID-19 simply by being counted part of our communities’ most vulnerable populations.

So, as an organization, it is our duty to find solutions and ensure the health and safety of our clients in any way possible – especially in times of crisis.

“Just as Volunteers of America as an organization has been doing since its inception in 1896, we will continue to creatively adapt and innovate to meet the ongoing needs of our clients,” responded Dan Lombardo, President and CEO of VOADV.

VOADV’s efforts to serve those in need will not cease because of this pandemic.

As part of our COVID-19 response, VOADV continues to implement new protocols and procedures to ensure minimal impact to operations and services while taking every measure to ensure the well-being of staff and clients. Our staff communicate with federal, state and local authorities regularly, while adhering to all guidelines set forth by the CDC and the New Jersey Department of Health. Additionally, programs forced to operate in a limited capacity, such as our Safe Return and Navigator programs, have creatively adapted their outreach efforts in order to best meet the changing needs of our clients and communities during this time.

Some of our protective measures and new, innovative outreach efforts include:

  • All essential staff members have been educated and trained on industry-best practices regarding pandemic disease containment protocol, including proper and safe COVID-19 screening of individuals and sanitization procedures for facilities and vehicles.
  • Camden Safe Return and Navigator program staff are working alongside The Food Bank of South Jersey to distribute meals to hundreds of local families in need each month at locations such as Woodrow Wilson High School, Pentecostal El Salmista Church, and other scattered sites and pop-up events in Camden.
  • Atlantic City Safe Return and Navigator program staff are partnering with the Atlantic City Housing Authority and Friends in Action to distribute meals to housing facilities for seniors and/or disabled persons in Atlantic City, at locations including Altman Terrace, Inlet Towers, John P. Whittington, Buzby Village and other scattered sites.
  • Through the support of the Horizon Foundation and Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers we continue to deliver health services to residents at the Aletha R. Wright Center, ensuring those with complex medical needs receive individualized care plans through telemedicine.

Our staff have been and continue to be resilient throughout this time of crisis. They remain dedicated and committed to serve, working diligently on the frontlines every single day and keeping each other safe and protected.

“We are confident in our preparation plans and our staff – and will remain steadfast in our efforts to provide services and assistances to those in need, even in the face of crisis,” continued Lombardo.

VOADV hopes that our efforts to adapt and commitment to serve can be a beacon of light in these dark, uncertain times. Up-to-date details about our measures to minimize the impacts of COVID-19 are available at www.voadv.org/covid-19.

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