For all of us, 2020 has been one of the most challenging years we have
experienced. These times can be hard for any of us to process as we face
daily uncertainty and isolation; these times are particularly hard for those
with intellectual disabilities. For people in services, many are separated
from family and friends due to social distancing. Many have lost their
community-based employment due to business shutdowns. Yes, 2020
has been a most challenging year for us all.
However, as the year comes to an end, I must reflect on the everyday
heroes of Area Residential Care, our staff. Truly heroes in our eyes as
they have never wavered in their dedication to protect our residents—
keeping them safe, healthy and active during quarantine. They do this
by making sacrifices in their personal lives, ensuring they protect one of
the most vulnerable populations to the destruction of COVID-19.
Thanks to our everyday heroes, we have experienced extraordinary outcomes. With the activities implemented by our team, residents have been actively learning, exploring and growing together while remaining safe in their homes. One group even worked together to change their diet and incorporate exercise into their daily routine, resulting in a more than 40-pound collective weight loss. More importantly, they have become closer as friends, boosting the morale of both the house staff and residents.
Thanks to our everyday heroes, we have experienced even stronger family relationships. Our staff regularly host family picnics in our backyards so that our residents can safely social distance and see their loved ones.
Staff and family members have even created outdoor seating areas in the yards, patios, and garages to help facilitate and nurture these visits.
How can you help us remain successful as we head into 2021? Your annual appeal gift will help us purchase computers and technology upgrades to improve the quality of our programming for consumers and staff. Although these times call for social distancing and oftentimes sheltering in place, through technology, we can better nurture critical family relationships for the people in our services—ensuring that all of our consumers have full access to virtual communication with their family members. And, through technology, our staff will receive the latest health protocols and best practices for people in services—ensuring that all of our consumers have full access to the highest quality programming. With your gift, we will be able to provide this technology, communication and best practices in our programming.