What we have been busy with during Covid-19 pandemic October 20, 2020

Updated: Nov 12, 2020

We acknowledge receipt of 12 packs of 5 reusable masks, 52 hand sanitizers, and 40 $10.00 e-Gift cards from the Bridgeport Rescue Mission. The gift cards are redeemable at specific family Dollar locations in Bridgeport and Stratford. They are given to our clients as Happy Thanksgiving gifts. We are grateful to Bridgeport Rescue Mission for extending its giving hand to vulnerable populations in our State.

Besides mental health awareness and psychosocial support services, we are distributing masks, sanitizers to our clients as a preventative measure against the spread of Coronavirus, which is on the rise again in the State of Connecticut.

As early as April 2020 to-date, Manda Institute's CEO has been involved in supporting patients, families, and staff at Bridgeport Hospital. The Institute also continued to support vulnerable populations living in Bridgeport among whom are immigrants and nonimmigrants. It was a tough and stressful time for everyone as people disengaged the usual community support systems. What sustains us in times of difficulties are support systems. However, the need to cub the spread of coronavirus pandemic meant that we cease visiting friends and families; for those who find relief in drinking alcohol in the pub, pubs were closed; for those who fellowship with others in churches or other religious communities, these facilities were closed; for those who find relief at work, most of the workplaces were closed and people worked and some are still working from home; families could not visit their patients at hospitals, nursing homes, or burry their loved ones. As if this was not enough, many people lost their jobs. The list continues. I do not need to tell you the impact of coronavirus pandemic as each one has been affected in one way or another. This was very difficult time for everyone, especially for immigrants and nonimmigrants who came to the USA on student visas, or exchange visitors, work visas or other types of visas. They watched their visas expire with no one to renew or to adjust their status as the immigration services were suspended following The Presidential Executive Order so that Americans can regain the jobs they lost during the Coronavirus pandemic shutdown. As we interacted with some of the vulnerable clients, one could tell the stress build-up.

Thus we spent most of our time offering Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD) sessions with individuals and families, and small groups especially the migrants to check on how they are doing, listen to them tell stories, and assess their needs, hopes, and resources at their disposal. We have started negotiating partnerships with funders or partner organizations for assistance with basic stuff to support the vulnerable people with subsidized rent money, food vouchers, masks, sanitizers, hand-washing soap as they wait for their immigration issues to be resolved. We owe Bridgeport Rescue Mission a huge debt of gratitude for giving us masks and hand sanitizers, which we have distributed to some households.

Our wishlist includes rent and food vouchers, masks, sanitizers, hand wipes and financial assistance for program costs.

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