A year on the frontlines of COVID-19

When the pandemic first hit, our community sprang into action to serve those most in need. Catholic Charities staff created a labor pool to support frontline staff, helped move people experiencing homelessness into hotels, shifted congregate dining to individual meal delivery and adjusted to the “new normal” in different ways to keep each other and our clients safe. Now, a year later and as vaccines begin to roll out to our clients and frontline staff, we asked staff to reflect on the pandemic and look to the future – of challenges, resilience and hope. Here are some of their words.

We began working with new partners to get groceries to clients, and also expanded medical services to include telehealth, COVID-19 testing and vaccinations for our residents and staff. There is a ray of hope with the availability of vaccines that life can be getting back to normal soon. -Amide Mutaboyerwa, Property Manager, St. Paul and St. Anthony Residence

With challenge comes creativity. It was a year of enormous change, with daily or weekly updates initially. Challenging situations always bring about creativity and increase resilience. We managed thanks to the flexibility, resiliency and determination of our staff. – Elaine Walsh, Program Manager II, Aging and Disability Services

It has been very emotionally stressful with all the negative news this past year as well as the overall adjustments in our lives, but with the vaccine out, there is a ray of hope that we may soon be getting back to a more quality way of life.” –Sean Conway, Case Manager II, St. Paul and St. Anthony Residence

I appreciated my employment with Catholic Charities the most during this pandemic because I felt it gave me a wider scope on the virus. I felt I had a bit of a front seat due to dealing with the public daily. –Lateese Jeter, Coordinator, Saint Paul Opportunity Center.

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