Connections’ Day Resource Center COVID-19 Response: NOW ACCEPTING NEW CLIENT INQUIRIES ONLINE!

Connections of Cumberland County Day Resource Center (DRC)
COVID-19 Response and Protocol

UPDATE 3/30/2020:  Due to COVID-19, effective March 19, 2020 the Day Resource Center has temporarily moved to a virtual service model. We are still accepting new client intakes until the center reopens to the public. Women (with or without children) who are experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity can initiate a new client intake by visiting: Connections of Cumberland County New Client Screening Form for more information.

Connections of Cumberland County takes the COVID-19 pandemic seriously and has been closely following the guidance of federal, state and local health officials for the past several weeks. We will continue to monitor the situation and update our procedures and policies as it evolves. Our top priority is the safety and health of our guests, staff, students, volunteers, partners and the community while maintaining as many services as possible to the extent we can safely and reasonably do so. If events necessitate that services change, we will post information at the DRC point of entry, on our website and social media.

Please review the following measures and protocols already in place to increase the preparedness among our guests, staff, students, volunteers, partners and the community. All of the measures have been implemented through the guidance from the established protocols and procedures from federal, state and local public health officials and Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to reduce the spread of infectious disease and illness.

Timeline of Procedure Implementation

3/4/2020 – COVID-19 precautionary handouts have been placed throughout DRC to guide staff, students, volunteers and guests in reducing risks of viral exposure or infection. Assessed stock of necessary supplies including hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and sanitizing spray for use throughout the facility.
3/11/2020 – Replenished stock of hand sanitizers and disinfectant cleaners.
3/11/2020 – COVID-19 precautionary handouts remain in place throughout DRC to guide staff, students, volunteers and guests in reducing risks of viral exposure or infection. Hand sanitizers remain placed in every work/service area and restrooms. Staff and students are encouraging guests to utilize hand sanitizers throughout the day and are modeling this behavior. Notices are affixed to every computer: “LET’S STAY WELL TOGETHER! TO REDUCE EXPOSURE TO VIRUSES AND BACTERIA, PLEASE SPRAY AND WIPE DOWN KEYBOARD, MOUSE AND COMPUTER SCREEN AFTER EACH USE. THANK YOU!”. Antibacterial spray and computer wipes are available in each computer access area. Our Team is sanitizing door knobs, bathrooms and other hard surfaces in guest and staff usage areas multiple times per day.
3/13/2020 – Carpets in computer lab and children’s room cleaned and sanitized. Began discussing alternative ways of deliver services and potentially limiting access to only essential services, if necessary.
3/16/2020 – Implemented the following DRC protocol:

  1. Sanitizing Station and CDC Protocol placed at outside entry point of DRC with signage indicating:
    • If you or your children are experiencing cold symptoms to include cough and fever, please do not enter the DRC.  Please report if you have traveled to areas where active COVID-19 infections have been documented.  Only 5 guests will be allowed access to DRC at a time.
    • To reduce risk of infection among all who visit the DRC, please sanitize your hands before entering the agency. Please review the guidance on the table to help you and your family reduce your risk of illness or infection.
    • All Women’s Empowerment Group activities and Career Exploration Lab activities may experience decreased meetings based on protocol developed by offsite community partners who deliver onsite programming at the DRC.
    • If Public Health officials recommend closure of organizations for an extended period of time, the DRC may abruptly close and notices will be posted on our door regarding how you can connect with a Case Manager during the closure period (email info@connectionsofcc.org to be triaged by phone or email).
    • If in operation, the DRC will be closing at 3:00pm daily to allow for staff to clean and disinfect to prepare for service the following day.
    • If in operation, new client intake hours are reduced to Tuesday through Thursday, 9:00am to 11:00am.
  2. Posted “Cover Your Cough” and “Proper Hand-Washing” posters in English and Spanish in all bathrooms and kitchen.

3/17/2020 – The following service protocol will be in effect beginning 3/18/2020 until further notice:

  1. Hand Sanitizing Station and COVID-19 protocol will remain at the outside entry point of the DRC.  The DRC will operate Monday through Thursday, 9:00am to 3:00pm.
  2. Once guests enter the DRC, they will interface with staff who will perform a non-invasive temperature check using a forehead thermometer.  All staff, students and volunteers performing duties onsite at the DRC will be subjected to temperature checks.  The following questions will be asked of all guests:
    • Do you have any symptoms of a respiratory illness?
    • Have you experienced a fever in the last 72 hours?
    • If you answer yes to either question or have an elevated temperature, entry into the DRC will not be allowed.  You will then be connected with a Case Manager via telephone or email.
  3. CASE MANAGEMENT AND CHILDREN’S ROOM:  Due to our University Partners pulling Case Management Interns from their placements nationwide, we are experiencing a significant reduction in force.  You may not be able to access your assigned Case Manager at this time.  Please email:  info@connectionsofcc.org to speak with Team members who will be able to assist you.
    • We know that so many in our community are struggling. Please be patient with our Team as our referral protocol looks very different than it has in the past.  There may be disruption of services or depletion of resources at other organizations as they develop their own protocol to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Our Team remains committed to reducing wrong doors in the community and will try to stay informed of changes or reduction of service among referral agencies.
    • Only 2 children will be allowed access to the children’s room at one time.  Our Team is not able to provide supervision of children at this time.  If guests need access to a computer, a laptop will be available in the children’s room so guests may complete their tasks while supervising their children.
    • We encourage you to engage your children in educational activities while experiencing school closures.  Our Team will from time to time send you helpful tips via email.  Many of our Team members have school-aged children and are happy to share.  Social distancing can impact our emotional wellbeing, and our Team is committed to making ourselves available to you to offer as much support as possible during these isolation periods.
  4. FTCC CAREER EXPLORATION LAB:  Our HRD Instructor has been pulled from onsite work at the DRC.  The Career Exploration Lab is suspended until further notice.  While the DRC is open, the computer lab will be available from 9:00am to 1:00pm daily.  The following measures are being put into place to allow guests access to computers for employment or resource procurement:
    1. Only 3 guests will be allowed in the lab at one time.
    2. We asked that guests limit their lab time to 1.5 hour per visit.
    3. Guests are required to sanitize their workstations before and after each use, using available products in the lab.
    4. If you are conducting job-seeking activities offsite, please create an NC Works account so that you can access employment related opportunities online and apply for Unemployment Benefits should your employment be impacted during this time.  https://www.ncworks.gov/vosnet/loginintro.aspx?blnStartHere=True&plang=E
  5. MAIL CHECK:  If you receive your mail at the DRC and need no additional services, you may call (910) 630-0106 during operation hours to inform our Team that you are in the parking lot and your mail will be delivered to you.  Please note that we are unable to provide your mail to anyone else in your absence.  If you have permanent housing, please take steps to have your mail forwarded to your residence by contacting companies/senders to change your address.  This is an important step.  Should the DRC close, you will experience a disruption in the receipt of your mail.
  6. HYGIENE CLOSET:  While the DRC is open, basic need items will be available.  Staff members will ask that you make a list of items that you need, and if available, they will choose items to give to you.  If basic need items are depleted, we will update this information.  Please call the DRC to check supplies before you expend your funds to travel to the DRC.
  7. DAILY LUGGAGE STORAGE:  While the DRC is open, daily luggage storage opportunities will be available for guests who are employed.
  8. WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT GROUPS:  Thursday’s Women In Transition Group will be limited to 4 group members onsite.  Your group facilitator will deliver the session with virtual technology until further notice.  Other Women’s Empowerment Groups are suspended until further notice.
  9. NEW CLIENT INTAKES:  While the DRC is open, new client intake hours will be Tuesday through Thursday, 9:00am to 1:00pm.  Should the DRC close, new client intakes will be handled in the following manner:
    1. Prospective clients should email info@connectionsofcc.org to request access to case management and provide the most reliable phone number (if available).
    2. New inquiries will be assigned to a member of our Team who will contact you via email or by phone to schedule a virtual meeting or discuss other options for engaging in services or procuring resources that may be available.
  10. BUS PASSES:  The DRC is suspending the availability of bus passes for verified employment and medical appointments until further notice.  To inquire about obtaining a bus pass, please contact Officer Sanders at (910) 433-1846 between the hours of 8:30am – 9:30am Monday through Friday.  As required at the DRC, you will also have to provide verification of your need for accountability purposes.
  11. If you do not have access to a printer and would like to post guidance on reducing risk of infections or illness in your own home, please email info@connectionsofcc.org, include your full name and mailing address, and we will mail flyers to you. If you have access to a printer, you may find this website helpful in finding flyers to post:  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/prevention.html

3/19/2019 – The DRC is closed until further notice.  The following measures are being put into place to continue to meet critical needs in our community:

  1. NEW CLIENT INTAKES:   
      • Prospective clients should email info@connectionsofcc.org to request access to case management and provide the most reliable phone number (if available).  
      • New inquiries will be assigned to a member of our Team who will contact you via email or by phone to schedule a virtual meeting or discuss other options for engaging in services or procuring resources that may be available.  
  2. CASE MANAGEMENT AND WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT:
      • Due to our University Partners pulling Case Management Interns from their placements nationwide, we are experiencing a significant reduction in force.  You may not be able to access your assigned Case Manager at this time. Please email: info@connectionsofcc.org to speak with Team members who will be able to assist you.  We know that so many in our community are struggling. Please be patient with our Team as our referral protocol looks very different than it has in the past.  There may be disruption of services or depletion of resources at other organizations as they develop their own protocol to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our Team remains committed to reducing wrong doors in the community and will try to stay informed of changes or reduction of service among referral agencies.
      • We are planning virtual workshops that you can be connected to at least 4 times per week beginning 3/24/2020.  Links to access these workshops virtually or telephonically will be emailed to current clients. Workshops will cover 1. tutoring tips; 2. financial literacy and budgeting tips; 3. encouragement and ways to reduce stress; and 4. tips/activities for keeping children busy while they are out of school – fun and educational!  We may even offer a weekly virtual group for children so that you may have a small window of time to practice self-care.  
  3. MAIL – There will be no active opportunities to check mail at the DRC until further notice.  Please email info@connectionsofcc.org to inquire if you have mail and to discuss options for you to receive your mail.  If you are in permanent housing, please contact the US Postal Service to begin mail forward to your current address.  It may also be helpful for you to contact any organization who is sending you mail to update your mailing address.  
  4. UNITED WAY 211 – United Way of Cumberland County is proud to provide funding and support to bring 2-1-1 to Cumberland County along with the City of Fayetteville, Cumberland County Government and Fayetteville PWC. “NC 2-1-1 is an important resource every day for families in our community who may experience a crisis such as food insecurity or unemployment. During times like this with the COVID 19 crisis, the needs of all North Carolinians will increase and I am proud 2-1-1 will be here to help,” said Robert Hines, President and CEO of United Way of Cumberland County. “Services like NC 2-1-1 are critical during times of emergency,” said Governor Cooper. “We need to make sure North Carolinians have access to the resources they need while we continue to work together to prevent the spread of COVID-19.” North Carolinians can text COVIDNC to 898211 to receive general information and updates about COVID-19. Sign up now to get regular alerts on the rapidly evolving situation and North Carolina’s response. Individuals who have specific needs related to food, shelter, energy assistance, housing, parenting resources, health care, substance abuse treatment, as well as specific resources for older adults and for persons with disabilities, and much more should dial 2-1-1 or TTY 888-892-1162 for assistance. Due to expected high call volume, those wanting to stay updated on general developments with North Carolina’s response to the coronavirus crisis should sign up for 211’s text alerts by texting COVIDNC to 898211.

We will continue to add necessary measures as the situation evolves.  We appreciate your patience as we work together in our community to keep everyone safe and well.