covid-19

March 16, 2020

Now More Than Ever

Now, more than ever, we need your help to offset the unbudgeted expenses we are facing. A gift of any size will help lift the burden off of families staying in shelter. To make a financial contribution, please click the donate button.

View a message from Daniel Gumnit, CEO
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At People Serving People, the safety of our shelter families, staff, and community is our top priority.

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We exist to see families thrive – your family, the family of our staff, and the families in our care at our emergency shelter and the Center of Excellence. In response to the increasing spread of COVID-19, People Serving People will be implementing a number of changes to how we operate within our shelter and in our community.

Emergency Contributions

To support families through this pandemic, we’re asking for your help with emergency contributions. Hand sanitizer, baby wipes, and other essentials are an urgent need for families in shelter. Additionally, we’re asking for things like coloring books, crayons, snack packs, and other items to stimulate kids while they’re out of school. Right now, we’re asking for new and unopened donations. Items can be purchased through our Amazon wish list or dropped off at our shelter.

As always, financial gifts can be made online and provide immediate support to the work of People Serving People. We are thankful to all who think of our organization during this difficult time.

Suspension of Volunteer Activities and Events

Effective Tuesday, March 17, People Serving People is temporarily suspending all volunteer opportunities and fundraising events. This is to ensure the safety of our guests and community by limiting the number of visitors in and out of our buildings. This will be a difficult change for our outstanding community of volunteers, supporters and our organization. We invite those who are looking to contribute to our organization during this time to make a donation or monetary gift.

Serving Families

People Serving People staff will continue to serve families in shelter to the best of our abilities. To limit physical interactions within our building and due to the suspension of our volunteer program, we will be temporarily discontinuing meals in our dining hall. Staff will instead deliver meals directly to each individual housing unit in shelter. We will also be limiting certain guest programming. This pandemic presents unique challenges to how we serve our families and we’re committed to finding effective and dignified solutions.

Early Childhood

Families continue to be at the center of our work and we are doing everything we can to support our community during uncertain times. For the time being, our Early Childhood Development Program and our secondary location, The Center of Excellence Preschool and Learning Center, will remain open and operating. We believe this decision is in the best interest of our families and communities, and is based on guidelines by The Minnesota State Departments of Health and Education.

Staff

In addition to supporting guests, People Serving People is committed to supporting staff and maintaining jobs. This includes offering remote work options when possible, providing sick pay in the event that a staff member becomes ill, and holding positions for those who don’t feel safe returning to work. Staff is encouraged to put their safety and the safety of their loved ones first.

On a public health note – as our staff continues to serve families who have no other place to go, we ask our broader community of supporters to please consider staying home if you’re able. This makes it safer for staff at organizations like ours to continue providing these essential services.

While People Serving People looks to support our guests, staff, and community in the immediate future, we understand that we are facing a long-term situation. We’re hoping for your continued support today, tomorrow, and on the other side of this crisis. We thank you for keeping our organization and the families that we serve in your hearts and minds.

With best wishes,

Daniel Gumnit, CEO