Our Response to COVID-19
All Catholic Charities NH programs remain operational during the COVID-19 outbreak, though most of our employees are providing support and assistance remotely. See below for specific program updates.
To all of our donors, volunteers and community members:
Catholic Charities NH is taking numerous measures to continually ensure the health, safety and well-being of our staff and those we serve amid the evolving COVID-19 outbreak. This page will be continually updated.
Across the organization:
- We continue to closely monitor the situation and its potential impact on our facilities, staff, clients, volunteers and residents. We are strictly adhering to the guidelines, regulations and recommended protocols from the World Health Organization, public health agencies and local, state and federal government.
- Our leadership team continually meets and communicates around-the-clock to adapt and respond as needed. We also remain in regular communication with our staff, Board of Trustees, the Diocese of Manchester, community partners and other stakeholders.
- We have a robust response plan, in collaboration with health officials and city and state leaders, in the event a case is detected among staff, residents or clients, or within any of our facilities. Staff with cold-like symptoms, potential exposure to COVID-19 and/or travel to high-risk areas are being asked to self-quarantine for at least two weeks.
- We continue to educate staff and volunteers on preventive measures and best practices to maintain a clean and healthy environment, both in the workplace and at home. Our facilities are cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis.
- We have transitioned non-essential staff to virtual work settings. Additionally, we are proactively developing a plan to ensure our essential staffing levels remain in place through the crisis, as needed.
- We have suspended any events, meetings or gatherings of more than ten people. In-person staff meetings are moving to virtual environments.
Specific program updates:
- Our administrative office (215 Myrtle Street in Manchester) is closed to all visitors. We are available via phone at 603-669-3030.
- Our skilled nursing facilities continue to follow our pandemic plan that we already had in place. Based on the guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, we placed a temporary restriction on visitors entering any of our skilled nursing facilities on March 13. This restriction will be in effect until COVID-19 is no longer a threat for our residents, staff and communities. There are exceptions on a case-by-case basis in special situations, such as end of life. We have begun virtual visitations for family members and loved ones to connect with family via Google Duo. Family members may schedule virtual visitations by calling the facility’s main line (listed here). We are also regularly screening our staff and residents for any symptoms.
- The New Hampshire Food Bank is only open to essential employees at this time and our food distribution and programs remain operational. We have doubled our Meal production in the Recipe for Success kitchen and have increased our purchasing of all foods due to the reduction in salvage coming from our grocery partners. Busier than ever during this time, the Food Bank is sourcing food and ensuring safe and secure pickups for our partner agencies or individuals at a food drop. Multiple mobile food drops have occurred or are in the works to get product to the North Country and other hard-hit areas of the state. We receive no state or federal funding for our food distributions. All donations to the Food Bank must be designated to that program by the donor. We are working with other charitable organizations and schools to identify how we can best respond to any gaps in need. Volunteer opportunities are halted until further notice.
- Liberty House is maintaining operation of its sober transitional living program and our building is closed to visitors. Community veterans may still receive food and clothing assistance by ringing the front door, where someone will meet them. While we continue to accept non-perishable food donations, we are not accepting clothing donations until further notice. We have paused our volunteer programs.
- The CareGivers continues to respond to the needs of homebound seniors across Greater Nashua and Greater Manchester. Our volunteer network is still delivering food through our Caring Cupboard program and driving seniors to medical and other vital appointments through the Caring Rides program. Caring Cupboard volunteers are following strict sanitation and food packaging best practices. Food deliveries are packaged in several layers of plastic bags and left at clients’ doors to prevent direct contact. Caring Rides volunteers are also following proper precautions to safeguard our clients.
- Our Counseling Services program is offering telehealth mental health counseling sessions. In-person appointments are suspended for the time being. For more information, click here.
- Our Parish & Community Services, Immigration Legal Services and Adoption Services remain operational. While non-essential physical service locations are closed, our outreach staff is actively working remotely and accessible to clients via phone for any assistance or questions.
- The Our Place program is offering its pregnancy and parenting curriculum education and providing other support to clients via telephone and Skype appointments. We continue to distribute diapers, wipes and other baby items while adhering to proper sanitation and social distancing best practices. We are still accepting donations of select baby and infant supplies. For any questions, please contact us here.
- At the current time, St. Charles School remains open. While there are currently no students on-site, the staff is offering remote instruction through June 22, our last day of school for this school year.
- Monadnock at Home has temporarily suspended all social programs and gatherings but continues to offer food delivery and check-in calls for seniors. Clients can phone in grocery orders to Roy’s Market in Peterborough (603-924-3101) and order food or medications online through Market Basket, Shaw’s and CVS. Volunteers will make deliveries at the client’s door, without entering the home. We are expanding our check-in calls to help clients cope with feelings of isolation. To serve more seniors across the Monadnock Region, we are accepting temporary memberships during the COVID-19 pandemic at no cost. For more information, contact 603-371-0809.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis:
- 2.4X increase in overall requests for Catholic Charities NH services have increased 2.4X.
- $5,422 in critical emergency assistance funds were distributed to New Hampshire individuals and families facing intense hardship.
- 195 telehealth mental health sessions were conducted, helping individuals dealing with anxiety, stress, depression and other mental health challenges.
- 7,809 pounds of food were delivered to homebound seniors throughout Greater Manchester and Greater Nashua.
You can also subscribe to our newsletter on our website to stay informed.
We will continue to serve those in need – but can’t do it alone.
While there is so much uncertainty – and life as we know it has hit the pause button – our work will carry on. Our mission and commitment to serving the needs of individuals and families in need is unbreakable, especially in a time like this.
While the days ahead will be challenging, we are stepping up to the plate to best support those we serve – and be the beacon of hope they desperately need. As always, we cannot do this work without your continued support and dedication. If you would like to make a gift, click here or send checks to 215 Myrtle Street, Manchester, NH 03104-4354.