The staff of rescue missions and kindred ministries, similar to medical personnel, are serving at the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of these organizations are the only refuge in their areas for people who are experiencing homelessness. People living on the streets are more vulnerable to contracting viruses than the general population, and sickness can spread more easily among them.
A chief goal of our member ministries during this time is to mitigate the risk of overwhelming hospital operations with people who have been unsheltered. Communication, collaboration, support, and—most of all—prayer are more critical than ever at this time. For this reason, Citygate Network is in constant communication with members, in addition to numerous government agencies, to gain insight, stay familiar with resources, and advocate for the needs of our member ministries. This toolkit will be regularly updated with information from the most reliable sources. Check back frequently, stay prayerful, and let us know what you need or how we can help.
(1) “The Big Six” recommendations from USICH to maintain safe "bubbles" within your mission or ministry.
(2) REVISED CDC guidelines for how to clean your facility and screen guests at your mission or ministry.
(3) A CDC/White House/FEMA-approved tool for self-screening to see if you have COVID-19.
(4) CDC Checklist for Homeless Service Providers During Community Re-opening which includes important considerations for service delivery as the surrounding community reopens and your guests resume interacting with the public.
(5) CDC Considerations for Health Departments for SARS-CoV-2 Testing in Homeless Shelters and Encampments covering types of tests, the appropriate use of testing, and suggestions related to testing asymptomatic individuals with recent known or suspected exposure to Coronavirus.
Important Information about COVID-19 Vaccination
The following information was provided by the USICH via an email sent on January 7, 2021.
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Small business allies decry Congress' short-term fix
Congress is about to unleash hundreds of billions of dollars in aid to small businesses, a long-awaited injection of relief that some employers, economists and advocates say won't be nearly enough as the economy faces a worsening winter slowdown.
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CDC Releases Updated Ventilation Guidance
Early this week the CDC announced updated guidance for homeless service providers to improve ventilation in your building, helping to protect your guests.
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Federal Agencies & Homelessness Providers: Preparing for the Upcoming Flu Season Amidst the Coronavirus
Citygate Network has partnered with Family Promise and Salvation Army to provide valuable resources and collaboration in the battle against COVID-19, Family Promise recently shared the link to a recent recording of a webinar to help you prepare for the 2020-21 flu season in the midst of the pandemic. The call included representatives from USICH, CDC, and DOH, among others. Login to Citygate Network’s members-only site to listen and access these valuable resources.
USICH Webinar: COVID-19 Future Planning for the Homelessness Response System: Lessons Learned from Birmingham, Detroit, and New Orleans
Don't miss this opportunity to hear from three communities discuss how they are planning for the future of their homelessness response system.
Register for the webinar »
COVID-19 Homeless System Response: Enhancing Safety in the Homeless Response System
HUD’s Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs (SNAPS) invites homeless assistance providers and their partners to participate in weekly Office Hours to discuss COVID-19 planning and response on Fridays from 2:30 - 4:00 PM EDT. Presenters from the following federal agencies and their partners will be available for a live question and answer session:
USICH Important Update - Seasonal Flu And COVID-19
As we approach the 2020-21 flu season, particular attention needs to be paid to the need for the seasonal flu vaccine, when medically appropriate, and SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). It is very important that the local plans be in place to appropriately address the seasonal flu within the community of homelessness and reduce the compounding effects of the seasonal flu and COVID-19.
Read the update »
COVID-19 Resources to Support Accurate Translation
As the pandemic rages on, language is more important than ever. Non-English-speaking members of the community must be informed about public health guidelines.
Read the article now »
PPP Money is Still Available
Any ministries still in need of a PPP loan can either go to the Paycheck Protection Program landing page or contact Sky Francine to apply through America’s Christian Credit Union. The PPP program has been extended until August 5th, so applications are still being accepted and processed.
Visit PPP website »
Email America's Christian Credit Union »
CDC Has New Guidance for Testing
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has a July 1 update to their testing guidelines in homeless shelters and encampments. All Citygate Network members need to read these as they take into consideration some new things that have been learned since the last guidelines were published, including issues with asymptomatic positive individuals.
Read the latest »
Self-Care Podcasts from the VA
The Veterans Health Administration recently started doing weekly podcasts on self-care for homeless service providers working with homeless veterans. You might find some of them helpful.
Access the podcasts »
Member Call on Wednesday
Citygate Network will hold another free, member-wide call this coming Wednesday, June 10, at 12:00 p.m. Dr. Robert Marbut from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) and Dr. Emily Mosites from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will join us.
Register for the call »
Center for Faith and Opportunity Initiatives Webinar
As announced in Street Smart, the Center for Faith and Opportunity Initiatives under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has focused on Mental Health in a Time of COVID-19 over the last several weeks. The next session will focus on "Connecting Spirituality to Mental Health Services in the Midst of the Crisis."
Register for the Webinar »
CDC Checklist for Homeless Service Providers During Community Re-opening
New guidance has been released specifically for those who work with the homeless population in the midst of the COVID-19 reopening phases. The new checklist includes important considerations for service delivery as the surrounding community reopens, and your guests resume interacting with the public.
Citygate Network President John Ashmen hosted members and government experts on webinars addressing various COVID-19 updates and other pertinent topics. The presentations were followed by a Q&A giving members the opportunity to express their greatest concerns.
The following subjects were prominent during many of the calls:
The entirety of these webinars were recorded and are available to members. Login to Citygate Network’s members-only site to listen.
Citygate Network members are telling us what they are doing differently—procedures, protocols, services, staffing—in light of the Coronavirus crisis. Login to Citygate Network’s members-only site to access the list.
Member organizations are named on the list so peers can contact them for more information. Please email Alice Gifford with any things you are doing that you don’t see on the list.
COVID-19 Precautionary Health Care Products
With COVID-19 spreading, it’s important to take precautionary steps to protect your mission and those you serve daily. This flyer provides a list of health items to consider acquiring for your mission or ministry.
Relief Bed Masks and Face Shields
Relief Beds can produce 500 face shields a day. For more information and pricing, contact Scott Smalling at (253) 312-0653 or email@example.com.
DollarDays—a long-standing and trusted business partner of Citygate Network—is here to serve you by providing critically needed goods. This allows you to stretch your dollars, accomplish your mission and provide dignity to those you serve. The current COVID-19 pandemic introduces particular challenges. Everyday necessities such as shelf-stable food and snacks, face masks, sanitizers, wipes, diapers, personal care hygiene products, bedding, and more, are difficult to find. DollarDays can source these and many items not listed here. Call 877-837-9569 for immediate personalized assistance or use the following links to begin your online order. If you call, be sure to mention that you are a Citygate Network member to get free shipping.
Resources and links are now being updated for Citygate Network members. Sign in to access these uniquely curated webinars, member documents, Zoom calls and webinars with the USICH and government contacts. For more information on membership email Sam Edwards today.