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Homeless Services Adapt to COVID-19 Crisis

haven_kitchen.jpg
The Haven
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Homeless shelters around the state are finding  creative ways to feed and house people during the COVID-19 crisis – doing their best to keep residents healthy.  Sandy Hausman reports on one center where guests are enjoying the luxury of space and gourmet meals.

For more information contact Stephen Hitchcock: stephen@thehaven.org  (434) 973-1234 ext. 113

The Haven is a shelter where people who are crashing with relatives, sleeping in a church basement or at the Salvation Army can get essential services during the day: breakfast, storage, a mailing address, showers, laundry, a place to use the phone and have computer access.

Executive Director Stephen Hitchcock says he’s sent staff members and volunteers at high risk from coronavirus home and is now counting on guests to help out.

“We have hand sanitizing stations throughout the building, and everyone, every hour is getting up to be a part of the cleaning process,” he explains.

And at meal time guests are rewarded with especially good food provided by Haven donors doing two good deeds at once.  They support local restaurants by order meals and then have them sent to the Haven.  

“Our guests have  gotten a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches,  so this change is very welcome.” Hitchcock says.

At the end of the day, when guests might head back to tight quarters, they’re now going to the Haven’s sanctuary or to a nearby recreation center where there’s enough room to place cots at least six feet apart.