Rural Outreach Center

ROC Ripples — 3.28.20

KEY TO HELPING IS SAFETY AND FLEXIBILITY 
Keeping safe today requires flexibility. Social work staff at the ROC is well versed in flexibility, and are adjusting therapy services at the ROC to meet the needs of our participants during this difficult time. Families everywhere are dealing with increased stressors related to money, schooling, and anxiety related to the unknown. These fears are compounded for the rural poor. It is more important than ever that the ROC social work staff continues to meet the needs of our participants in a way that keeps everyone safe and healthy.

Counseling sessions are now held via phone or over the virtual meeting platform, Zoom. As always, we adapt to our participant’s needs. Some participants need only brief phone check-ins, while other children and families may need daily sessions. Sessions may focus more on daily fears, anxieties and stress management, or on getting along with family. As this situation continues to evolve, social workers at the ROC will adjust to bring our participants the extra support they need.

CODE BLUE SERVICES EXPANDED TO 24/7 HOMELESS SHELTER
Normally our Code Blue shelter is open only when the temperature drops below 32o F. To reduce exposure to the COVID virus in this exceptionally vulnerable population, we currently are open 24/7. As you can imagine, this has put great pressure on staffing. We need volunteers to stay overnight and for Sundays during the day. Please contact Camille at (513) 550-2990 if you have questions or can volunteer. 

EDUCATIONAL SUPPORT
Children at the ROC generally need extra academic support. With schools increasingly relying on parental in-home instruction with access to the internet, ROC children are at great risk of falling farther behind because parents don’t have the resources to provide instruction and the internet is unavailable. 

To address these problems, we are putting a supportive educational program together for our families. It started with frequent calls to offer support and assess needs. If needed, families were guided through their school district’s process for getting resources. We are now putting together boxes of resources and recruiting volunteers who can provide mentoring and tutoring. We also are developing virtual group programs, via Zoom, to keep ROC kids connected and maintain their progress in dealing with traumas.

HELP IS NEEDED
Please consider supporting rural families with a tax-deductible donation. Support ROC Here. Your contribution will help the ROC respond to the COVID-19 crisis, support programmatic efforts and provide resources for educational support, groceries and other basic human needs. 

Gift Cards: Crosby’s Gas, TOPS, Walmart and VISA will help support rural families.

Non-perishable foods, including:

  • Cereal – cold and oatmeal
  • Boxed meals
  • Canned fruit – 100% juice or lite syrup if possible
  • Pasta and pasta sauce
  • Rice – including brown rice and wild rice
  • Hearty soups/chili
  • Crackers
  • Boxed mashed potatoes
  • Pancake mix/syrup
  • Canned tuna or chicken – water-packed if possible
  • Canned beans such as kidney or black beans
  • Macaroni & Cheese

Other items that can’t be purchased with SNAP:

  • Diapers, size 4 and 5
  • Toothpaste/toothbrushes
  • Toilet tissue & paper towels
  • Deodorant
  • Bath soap
  • Feminine hygiene (tampons)
  • Laundry detergent
  • Cleaning items: Clorox, Lysol & other home cleansers

WE ARE HUMBLED BY YOUR SUPPORT
The Rural Outreach Center wishes to thank its devoted friends and community partners who have shown their support by providing significant emergency funds and in-kind help. Is addition, significant support has come from:
The Western New York Foundation
Pegula Sports & Entertainment, Kim and Terry Pegula – The Buffalo Bills & Buffalo Sabres Foundations
The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation 
Thank you!
You can drop off donations at 730 Olean Road, East Aurora, between 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday.  Other arrangements can be made if necessary.  

Monetary donations can be made at the ROC or right on our website.  Donations will be used to purchase gas cards/food cards for community needs.  

Finally, as you consider purchasing items, please support your local businesses as much as possible.  

In partnership, 

Frank Cerny, Executive Director

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