The Poverello Center Inc. exists to provide nutritious food, services and basic living essentials with the highest degree of understanding, respect and love for individuals living with critical and chronic illnesses Including HIV, in South Florida. These are the very individuals who experience the greatest risk from COVID-19. We have reviewed the best available information from CDC (Community Mitigation Strategy and the Interim Guidance for Employers) and OSHA (Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19) materials referenced below.
While we’ve educated our employees and volunteers, improved the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting our areas, we have also evaluated our buildings, processes and capabilities with the following action items from our Infection Control Emergency Plan to be implemented the week of 3/15/2020 – 03/20/2020:
We have determined that beginning 03/16/2020 only people who are enrolled (or those with an intake completed) in our Food Pantry Program and our staff dedicated to serving them will be allowed at our building in Wilton Manors, Florida.
All volunteer programming except the “Lot’s of Love, No Touch” grocery delivery program will be suspended at 7:00 PM on 03/16/2020.
Our Live Well Center and all of the organizations who use it as a base of operations will close from the location at 2200 Wilton Manors.
All thrift store operations will be shifted to our Pompano Store, located at 174 N Powerline Rd., Pompano Beach, FL 33069 effective 03/20/2020 at 7 PM.
What will remain after 03/16/2020 at our Wilton Manors location is our Food pantry operation only.
Food recovery efforts will cease (the practice of collecting unsold bread and other food at local grocery stores) after 03/16/2020.
We think these mitigation measures will ensure our organization serves the most vulnerable among us in the safest manner possible. While Dr. John Brooks recently stated those who have a low CD4 count or a detectable viral load are at increased risk of aquiring COVID-19, just over 90% of our program participants have acheived viral suppression.
There’s much for all of us to do. If you would like to help we’re asking the community to Donate, Volunteer and Share. Donate to our Florida AIDS Walk effort (although the walk is postponed, doubling of all money raised continues). Volunteer for our Lots of Love, No Touch Grocery Delivery program that will keep groceries delivered to the most vulnerable in our community. Share our needs with your friends and families.
It takes literally thousands of people each year for us to accomplish what we do in the community. From donors to our thrift stores, hundreds of financial donors and hundreds of volunteers donating their time for us to reduce food insecurity to those who pray and support our efforts and we’re grateful.