As people around the world are ordered to stay at home in an effort to slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus, one population might be struggling more than others: seniors.
St. Paul’s Senior Services, a San Diego-based nonprofit that works with seniors throughout the region, said the elderly population, including members of its own group, need help more than ever.
“The isolation is the most difficult for our residents,” Cheryl Wilson, CEO of St. Paul’s Senior Services, said. “We want to remind everyone that there are seniors in the community who may appreciate support.”
Wilson said as news of the outbreak grew, the nonprofit quickly implemented new procedures to protect their senior residents.
“St. Paul’s prides itself on anticipating the needs of our seniors,” Wilson said. “Like all senior communities, we have infection control procedures in place. We locked down all our buildings over two weeks ago with only necessary staff and residents in the communities these days. We did this ahead of the state directive for the safety of our residents. No visitors may enter. This is having the most significant effect on our seniors, who usually enjoy family visits, lively entertainment, and outings.”
Thanks to resources already in place, the seniors are living comfortably at St. Paul’s communities despite not being able to interact with people outside of the facilities. Wilson said the nonprofit has an onsite healthcare staff as well as other programs.
“Residents don’t have to worry about grocery shopping because we provide three meals each day; we are taking orders, with staff doing grocery runs and deliveries, and we are taking Food Bank essentials to our homebound St. Paul’s PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly) seniors,” Wilson said.
But, support is still needed for the nonprofit, particularly during this time.
“We recently received a delivery of flowers and homemade cards at one of our locations, which was a tremendous treat for our residents,” Wilson said.
Wilson also said the nonprofit’s PACE program could use personal cleaning supplies, activity books, and “little gifts to cheer up” their residents.
For more information or to make a donation, go to www.StpaulSeniors.org.
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