Update from UMCS re: COVID-19 and Impact on Programs and Services

March 17, 2020

Dear All,

In light of recent developments related to the spread of COVID-19, we wanted to reach out to UMCS partners, volunteers and supporters to inform you of how our programs and activities will be adjusted over the coming weeks.  

The situation is of course extremely dynamic.  We will continue to closely monitor events and reassess our position on a regular basis, being sure to do so in accordance with the updated guidance that we are receiving from officials and health experts.  Like other organizations and businesses, UMCS is adhering to that guidance and also seeking to strike an appropriate balance between scaling back/canceling our activities and ensuring that we are able to provide critical assistance to those in need and who may be most affected by the multi-faceted disruption that the COVID-19 outbreak is causing.  With that in mind, here are some of the UMCS programmatic and operational updates at this time:

The UMCS Emergency Food Pantry remains open at this time, and it is our intention to keep the Food Pantry open over the coming weeks in accordance with the updated guidance and recommendations that are being circulated by The Hunger Task Force, i.e. frequent sanitizing, use of gloves, pre-packaging food kits, streamlining procedures, utilizing door-side/curbside delivery as opposed to bringing people into the building, etc…

- Food Pantry hours will remain unchanged – Mondays and Wednesdays from 12:00-4:00 p.m.

- Senior Stock Box program will continue from 9:00-11:00 a.m. on Tuesdays

Suspended Programs and Activities:

- The UMCS Clothing Bank will be temporarily closed until further notice; hygiene items will be distributed to Food Pantry participants during the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month

- UMCS childcare facility (The Growing Tree Children’s Center) will be temporarily closed as of tomorrow through at least Friday, March 27th – dialogue will be ongoing with childcare parents to communicate any additional adjustments to plans

- All Community Engagement Activities, including the March Into Mindfulness event (March 20th) and the 2020 Census Community Rally (March 27th) are cancelled; depending upon how the situation develops in the coming weeks, we will potentially seek to reschedule some of these events.

Just like families and organizations are doing across the city and indeed all over the world, the UMCS team is rallying together to support one another and the people we serve during these challenging times.  As always, we thank you for your continued support, we will get through this together!

If you have any additional questions or matters to discuss, please contact your regular UMCS staff liaison.  Please also feel free to contact me directly at any time!

Thank you,

William Schmitt

Executive Director
United Methodist Children’s Services of WI, Inc. (UMCS)
3940 W. Lisbon Ave Milwaukee, WI 53208