Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update and Preparedness
UPDATE 03.12.2020: EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, WE ARE TEMPORARILY CANCELING VOLUNTEER SHIFTS THROUGH APRIL 5.
During this heightened time of awareness around COVID-19, we want to underline our commitment to the health and well-being of all members of our community–guests, staff, volunteers, and visitors.
Thanks to the high hygiene standards already set by our chefs, we have strong baseline protocols in place to prevent the spread of sickness—whether coronavirus, flu, or other. These standards are in place not only because we serve food, but also to protect our entire community, including our guests, who may have weakened immune systems due to chronic health conditions and heightened vulnerability to illness due to living outdoors or in shelters.
So, we wanted to take a moment to remind you of our hygiene protocols, share ways we are stepping up, and provide additional resources.
STAY HEALTHY PLAN – BACK TO BASICS!
- Stay home when you are feeling sick! Even if it’s just the sniffles, the best way you can support MK and our guests is to stay home and refrain from coming to MK until 24 hours after symptoms have ceased.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, multiple times per day (and in our case multiple times per meal shift). Hand sanitizing stations are available in the dining room should you need them.
- Use only your knuckle to touch light switches, elevator buttons, etc.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Wear gloves and hat/hairnet in the kitchen and dining room.
- Do not hug or shake hands. Check out this link of fun ways to greet people that do not involve touch (Personally, I am a fan of Vulcan salute from Star Trek. The attached meaning of “Live long and prosper” seems like a warm and fitting greeting)
- If you notice anyone feeling unwell (experiencing flu-like symptoms), please notify MK staff.
WAYS WE ARE STEPPING UP
- Posting new signage in the dining room to remind all visitors of ways to prevent sickness.
- Disinfecting the common area more frequently throughout shifts (e.g. wiping down phones, computers, and doorknobs).
- Educating and communicating with staff, volunteers, visitors and guests on how to protect themselves, prevent the spread of disease, and seek health care when needed.
- Analyzing how each program might be impacted by the virus or quarantine measures so we can better support guests and staff.
- If you plan to travel to an area designated as Warning 3 Level by the CDC, please let us know, and we ask that you follow CDC guidelines about self-quarantine after travel.
- DC coronavirus site: https://coronavirus.dc.gov/
- Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/summary.html
A note to our volunteers: Please don’t feel guilty! While we rely on volunteers to provide services, we respect your decision on whether you are able to volunteer.
We just ask that you please notify Martha Wolf (email@example.com) at least 12 hours in advance if you are not able to make a shift to help us plan accordingly.
If you’d like to be added to the emergency response volunteer team to help fill in understaffed volunteer shifts, please also contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
And as we receive new information, we will be sure to keep you informed.
President & CEO, Miriam’s Kitchen
Check https://miriamskitchen.org/in-the-news/ to make sure you are reading the latest updates around COVID-19.