Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates: Our Response
As information about the coronavirus pandemic develops, we are taking every measure possible to keep our participants, staff, and larger community safe. Nonprofit staff have been deemed essential workers by New York State. Many of our programs provide critical services including our residential and foster care programs and cannot close. While we navigate this crisis, we are organizing, mobilizing, and advocating for our communities.
Here is a brief overview of our efforts:
- Our residential programs for adolescents in foster care or the juvenile justice system remain open as they are home to nearly 220 young people and families.
- Our child welfare programs are contacting as many families as possible electronically. However, contacts with our most high-risk families are still taking place in person and within recommended safety guidelines.
- We are providing emergency assistance to foster care participants who have had to leave college, made travel and other arrangements for those who need to come home and ensured those who can stay in dorms have resources for food and other necessities.
- We redeployed staff whose school-based programs are closed to one of the following areas: (1) remote academic support for participants who are now homeschooling; (2) emergency child care centers that the city has set up for the children of health care workers and other essential staff; (3) residential facilities to relieve essential staff as needed.
- We have been leading advocacy efforts to ensure that Good Shepherd and other human service nonprofits in NYC responding to the crisis will receive support from our government partners
Keep abreast of press coverage of our COVID-19 response below.
Call for City to do More to Defund Police and Support Youth Services
Good Shepherd Services Applauds Youth Who Inspired Reallocation of NYPD Funds to Summer Programming; Urges City to do More to Defund Police and Support Youth Services. Read More
Miccio Community Center Forced To Close Its Doors
As a result of the Mayor’s Executive Budget proposal eliminating the Beacon, Cornerstone, School’s Out NYC (SONYC) and COMPASS programs, in Red Hook, the Joseph Miccio Cornerstone Community Center was forced to shut its doors on Friday, June 26. Read More
COVID-19 Reflections, An Accountability Call to White People
Written by: Diana Noriega, Assistant Executive Director of Anti-Racism and Equity at Good Shepherd Services
Over my lifetime, I have been challenged by white fragility and all the many ways whiteness shows up in spaces, communities and within myself. Of course, I did not develop consciousness around what whiteness and white fragility meant until I attended a predominantly white institution (PWI) for college. I knew that I would be steeped in whiteness and undoing the impervious nature of white supremacy culture when I agreed to take on a role leading anti-racism and equity work in a nonprofit led largely by white women. But this month, particularly the past two weeks, it feels especially challenging to hold space for whiteness. Read More
This Shelter Is Helping People in Lockdown Escape Domestic Violence
Shelter-in-place orders are keeping COVID-19 infections down, but there’s a dangerous side effect: In many parts of the world, reported cases of intimate-partner violence are on the rise, and victims may be unable to seek help. In this Vice News segment, we take you on a behind-the-scenes look into our Safe Homes Project program for survivors of abuse. Watch here
5 weeks into online learning, NYC is still racing to get thousands of devices to students
Five weeks after New York City moved to remote learning, 19,000 students who requested devices still don’t have them. The education department has pledged to deliver them by the end of the month. Read More
Calling on City Officials to Support Students Most Affected by COVID-19
Good Shepherd Services and 60+ partner organizations wrote a letter to the mayor and DOE Chancellor to call for more support for students most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More
Foster Care Facilities Scramble to Come Up with Emergency Response Plans Amid Virus Outbreak
The lives of children in foster care are all too often disrupted time and again as they change placements, sometimes being housed in different states over the course of several years. Many have also reported their time spent in state institutions was frightening as they experienced physical and sexual abuse by employees.
NYC’s School Closures Are a Crisis of Their Own for Disadvantaged Families
What protections exist for students who were already struggline before the coronavirus pandemic? Diana Noriega, assistant executive director of Anti-Racism and Equity at Good Shepherd, comments on glaring equity issues during this crisis.
Access to Regional Enrichment Centers for Students who are Homeless
During the NYC school shutdown, Regional Enrichment Centers serve as a lifeline for these students and their ability to continue learning. NYC must commit to allowing students who do not have permanent homes to attend the Regional Enrichment Centers while schools are closed.
Read the letter we wrote along with several partner organizations to the DOE Chancellor.
Governors and Mayors Left to Support Some of the Most Vulnerable Americans Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic
The federal government has taken no action to ensure state and local governments can continue to support their nonprofit human-services organizations. Read More
Nonprofits Seek $60 Billion Federal Aid Package
Nonprofits are seeking $60 billion in assistance from the federal government to help them respond to special needs and offset the loss of income that many are suffering. Read More
Our Message to the Federal Government: Extend Census Deadline Amid Coronavirus Crisis
The census is an essential tool for all communities across our country, particularly hard to count populations. It is a key determinant of resources, visibility, and need – determining how funds are distributed for the next 10 years. Making sure every person is counted is of paramount importance. Read More
What Social Service Agencies Need Right Now: Coronavirus Checklist, An OpEd by Michelle Yanche
To ensure New York’s social services organizations can continue to meet the needs of our most vulnerable communities, we have listed the needs that must be met by city and state leaders. Read More
Good Shepherd Services Calls on Government Partners for Immediate Support Amid Coronavirus Crisis
Without active and immediate guidance from our government partners, we risk leaving the communities that need us most without the services they rely on, and our staff without the resources and clarity they need to perform their jobs effectively and safely. Read More
We’re Taking Every Measure Possible
As information about the coronavirus pandemic develops, we are taking every measure possible to keep our participants, staff, and larger community safe. Support our Efforts.