26 Mar March 18, 2020
Homeless Authority Working for the Homeless during the Coronavirus Pandemic
Chatham Savannah Authority for the Homeless is setting up wash stations and supply collection centers to protect the homeless and other citizens from the COVID19 virus. The hand washing stations have been set up in locations around the city to provide the primary protection health officials recommend – hand washing.
Homeless Authority Executive Director Cindy Murphy Kelley has been working with the City of Savannah, Authority Executive Committee and staff to provide water trucks in several high traffic locations around the city to promote the first level of protection – washing of hands. Hotels in the city, working through the Tourism Leadership Council, have supplied 1,000 one-ounce bars of soap to facilitate the hand washing.
“Frequent hand washing continues to be the best way to keep down the number of cases of COVID-19, even better than alcohol-based sanitizer,” Kelley said. Kelley is in constant contact with health experts to develop and adapt plans as the crisis evolves and is the point of contact for the many efforts underway in the area and has been sitting in on some governmental agency discussion and leading others as the nation attacks this pandemic. Current plans are evolving and subject to change.
In addition to its normal supportive care, Homeless Authority staff is:
- Working with the three primary emergency shelters, including Union Mission, Salvation Army and Inner City Night Shelter, as well as food distribution agencies like Emmaus House, the business community and area & local government entities on efforts to improve sanitation in the shelters and especially in the network of homeless camps around Savannah and Chatham County. Agencies are instituting measures in their facilities to help reduce the spread of the virus.
- Homeless Authority staff have distributed informational flyers to clients in the tiny house village, City 54 and more than 30 homeless camps around Chatham County.
- Authority staff is arranging for a tent to be placed outside the Department of Family and Children building at 761 Wheaton Street, to allow staff members to provide information, resource identification and hand washing capability.
- Staff also is soliciting donations of trash bags, baggies, small bars of soap, facemasks, vinyl gloves and hand sanitizers. The items can be left at the tent in front of the Homeless Authority office at 761 Wheaton Street.
- The Homeless Authority office telephone (912) 790-3400 has been set up as a hotline for homeless persons and others seeking information.