posted on March 12, 2020 13:31
MARCH 12th UPDATE!
The Pantry has been in contact with the Harwich Health Department to proactively assess our operation and to adjust as needed. Pantry staff will be on the regional conference call held by the Barnstable County Regional Emergency Planning Committee on Thursday to hear the latest information regarding COVID-19.
The following steps have been put in place at The Family Pantry to help mitigate the exposure to the Virus:
We are following all of the CDC guidelines involving, social distancing (remaining at least 3’ from other people when possible), covering coughs, washing hands, refrain from touching face, disinfecting surfaces, staying home when ill, etc. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/cleaning-disinfection.html
- Our cleaning company Impeccable Clean , now will clean every day and insure that all surfaces are thoroughly disinfected
- Signs are posted on all entry doors asking clients and volunteers to please stay home if they are not well. Clients can have others shop for them if need be
- Access to the Pantry will be limited to 10 clients at a time to support social distancing
- A volunteer will work the front client entry door to help insure the 10 client rule
- Barriers will be placed in front of the registration desk , to provide a safe space for volunteers who are working the desk (Clients tend to lean on the desk and into the conversation)
- Disinfecting spray, wipes, cleaners, and gloves are provided throughout the Pantry
- All surfaces in the Pantry (tables, door handles etc.) will be wiped down every 4 hours with disinfecting spray
- All volunteers are asked to monitor and clean their space, and to thoroughly clean their space prior to ending their shift
- Bathrooms will be monitored routinely and wiped down with disinfecting spray every 4 hours or sooner as needed
- All volunteers will be required to wear gloves and asked to change them frequently
- All volunteers are encouraged to wash their hands frequently
- Disinfecting wipes are available to wipe down the handles of grocery carriages
- We have been in touch with the Greater Boston Food Bank and will be receiving a full truck load (32) Pallets of additional nonperishable products to stockpile a reserve
- The Greater Boston Food Bank intends to remain operating unless “they see tanks rolling down the street” or the staff falls ill and cannot man the warehouse
- The Pantry staff is working on alternative distribution methods in case our volunteers are impacted to the point that we do not have enough to man the typical distribution
- The Councils on Aging have all been emailed to encourage their seniors to use the Healthy Meals in Motion Mobile Pantry as an alternative to coming to the Pantry
- We have been in touch with 4Cs and will follow their guidelines. They are considering closing the school after Spring break (next week); possibly reopening on April 2nd
- Carol and her team at Second Glance are in the loop
The Pantry serves on average over 500 families a week. It is imperative that we do everything possible to keep the Pantry operating and serving our community. However; with that said, we have a commitment to our volunteers, staff and clients to ensure their well-being. The Pantry staff will continue to monitor the situation and will adjust when necessary so that nobody is put in jeopardy.
Please call if you have any concerns or suggestions, we will do our best to keep things under control, be as proactive and possible and respond accordingly.