This message is from CEO Renee Hardman regarding COVID-19 on 3/18/2020 (Updated: 4/6/2020).
We have been keeping a close eye on the updates and conditions of the coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic. The Governor has declared a State of Public Health Disaster Emergency. To protect the safety of our Bigs, Littles, and their familes, we have made the following changes to our programs:
- Community-Based Mentoring: We highly encourage matches not to meet in-person, effective now until Thursday, April 30, 2020.
- Match Activities (organized by BBBSCI staff) will NOT be held until further notice.
- School-Based Mentoring: There will be no School-Based Mentoring during spring break. In addition, there will be no School-Based Mentoring until Thursday, April 30, 2020. We will stay in close contact with each school and will notify matches as to whether the program will continue or be postponed before classes resume.
- Workplace Mentoring: There will be no Workplace Mentoring until Thursday, April 30, 2020. We will stay in close contact with each school and business partner, and we will notify matches as to whether the program will continue or be postponed before classes resume.
- If you have questions, need to discuss your particular situation, or advice on how to talk to your Little about the coronavirus, please reach out to your Match Support Specialist.
It is so important that your Little knows that they are cared for and not forgotten. Social distancing can lead to isolation- we want people to be safe and feel connected with others so we’re encouraging matches to stay in contact. We encourage matches to stay connected by texting, e-mailing, video-chatting or sending notes and/or cards. A weekly phone call with your Little to check in will mean the world to them.
Please click here to view a list of regularly updated resources for matches, and activity ideas for Littles at home.
Our office will be closed from Thursday, March 19, 2020 until Thursday, April 30, 2020. During this time, the BBBSCI team will work remotely. We will interview volunteers and lead orientations via video conferencing. We will also interview youth desiring a mentor on calls and video. Perhaps most importantly, our Match Support Specialists will continue to serve as a hub for hundreds of families—providing resources for those who may be affected by loss of income, food insecurity, lack of healthcare, and anxiety due to the uncertainties related to COVID-19.
We are keeping in close contact with schools and local health officials, and we will alert you to any updates when they occur. You can also contact Tony Leo- Director of Programs & Operations at [email protected]; or me, Renee Hardman- CEO at [email protected].
Thank you for all that you do. We are here to answer any of your questions or concerns. Be safe and careful.
Chief Executive Officer
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa