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Groups need supplies, volunteers to deal with situation

Due to the coronavirus, several nonprofit organizations and groups throughout Stanly County have been struggling, with many people staying home to practice social distancing and resources are in short supply.

The United Way of Stanly County has been staying busy, communicating with state and national United Way groups while also coordinating with local organizations to understand what they need during their uncertain time.

“Our main priorities right now are helping ensure accurate and efficient public health and resource information, coordinating volunteer and supply needs for our local non-profits and accessing financial resources that can assist with immediate needs and long term recovery,” according to a United Way document listing the agencies activities.

Here is a list, compiled by United Way, of the current status of partner agencies, including any supplies or volunteers they need.

Stanly Community Christian Ministry (SCCM): The organization closed its Closing Closet, located along East Main Street in Albemarle, due to coronavirus health concerns, which has severely impacted its operational revenue. The majority of funds for public assistance SCCM provides come from the income received by the Clothing Closet. SCCM has adapted the Community Table meal sites to serve food to-go only and closed the dining rooms. The pantry is operating similarly, with volunteers filling boxes of food and distributing them rather than having clients shop the pantry.

SCCM needs Lysol, disinfectant wipes, diapers, food for the pantry and take-out containers for the Community Table meal sites. It also needs healthy people with no underlying conditions to help with food pantry operations, Community Table meals and administrative duties.

Crisis Assistance Fund (CAF): This agency works in partnership with SCCM to assist with large financial assistance requests, particularly those for housing and utility bills to prevent homelessness. They have already received twice as many applications for assistance this month with many related to lost employment wages from the coronavirus. They are predicting a large need for financial assistance in the coming months as many families who work in many essential industries such as healthcare are unable to work from home and are being laid off.

CAF needs money to continue to provide homelessness prevention assistance.

American Red Cross: The organization is experiencing a significant blood shortage since blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in due to the coronavirus. Healthy individuals are needed to donate blood to help those in the medical field combating the virus. To address this need, the local Red Cross office is hosting a series of emergency blood drives from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on March 24, 25 and 31 and April 1 at 243 W. Main St. in Albemarle. For more information, visit www.redcross.org/local/north-carolina/greater-carolinas.html

Homes of Hope/Community Inn shelter: They have adapted shelter protocols to implement precautions and prepare staff and volunteers for best practices in conjunction with the Health Department and emergency management guidelines. If people can help with cleaning supplies or would like to volunteer, contact Shanta Watkins at 704-982-3634 ext.3.

Homes for Hope and the Community Inn shelter needs disinfectant sprays, wipes and cleaning products for families in transitional housing. Staff shortages could occur, but it’s too early to tell if volunteers will be needed, officials said.

Stanly County Senior Services: Group classes have been cancelled at both Stanly Senior Center locations in Albemarle and Locust, though staff is at the Albemarle center to take calls. Senior meal programs are still operating, but are take-out and delivery only. Anyone over 60 needing assistance with food or basic needs, contact them at 704-986-3769.

The Senior Center needs healthy individuals age 18-60 to deliver meals and other needs as they may arise.

Esther House: They have adapted shelter protocols to implement precautions and prepared staff and volunteers for best practices in conjunction with the health department and emergency management guidelines. If people can help donate supplies, call their main office at 704-961-7502 to arrange drop off. 

Esther House needs nonperishable food, cleaning supplies and feminine products.

Habitat for Humanity: The Resale store is closed for renovations but is still picking up donations and has one active home build going on in Stanly County and one in Montgomery County. If anyone can help donate supplies, call 704-985-1050 or email Bryan Price at bprice@stanlyhabitat.org.

Stany Habitat needs masks and gloves for volunteers.

Stanly County 4H: All in-person classes and programs have been cancelled. The group has developed a daily online STEM lesson and is developing other online educational programming. For details contact Kacie Hatley at Kacie_hatley@ncsu.edu.

Contact reporter Chris Miller at 704-982-2122.

 

About Chris Miller

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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