During difficult times our children are in even greater need of a nurturing and safe family setting. We are still accepting applications for new families here.
We are still here for you.
CHS is continuing to follow the guidelines provided by the state of North Carolina. As of July 6, our offices have reopened for normal operations with COVID protocols in place.
The CHS COVID-19 Response Team continues to meet regularly to assess and recommend guidelines to ensure CHS is complying with all state guidelines. Please be assured that our staff remains accessible while transitioning back into our work environments in our commitment to provide professional support and services to our families and children.
We will continue to provide updates and please email any questions to COVID19info@chsnc.org.
As we continue to closely monitor the situation, we also encourage everyone to practice proper preventive measures.
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1:45pm – October 29, 2020
We Believe In Families
We are following recommendations from federal, state and local authorities to help prevent the spread of the virus. While all of our employees are working remotely, per the Stay at Home direction provided by Governor Cooper, some of our employees are continuing to access our offices as needed while complying with the guidelines.
In response to developments around COVID-19, CHS has assembled a Response Team to monitor updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and our state and local governments. And, as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly evolves, our Response Team and Leadership Team are working hard to ensure our team has the information and materials needed to continue their work remotely as we continue to provide professional support and services to our clients, families and children while keeping our employees and communities safe.
CHS serves 20,00 children, families and professionals each year across North Carolina and beyond. Our work is vitally important and will continue. Here are some of the changes and enhancements we have implemented to keep our employees, families and clients safe:
- All employees have been educated on COVID-19 symptoms, how to avoid spreading the virus and social distancing guidelines as directed by the CDC
- We have created a mailbox for questions related to CHS or COVID-19 COVID19info@chsnc.org
- We have enhanced cleaning procedures in our offices following CDC and public health guidance, and increased shipments of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes
- Installed signs at offices to promote healthy work standards according to the CDC guidelines
- We moved rapidly to establish remote-working opportunities for all staff and increased supports to aid social distancing
- As our specialists meet with hundreds of families and young people, we are using these sessions to reinforce health education around limiting the virus’ spread and help families access information related to COVID-19
- We are following state guidelines in accordance with all in-person visits and tele-visits. Where possible, our work has moved to remote and virtual formats to limit in-person contacts.
- We have postponed and canceled events and are implementing ways to host events virtually in support of our mission
- We have created the https://www.chsnc.org/covid19-coronavirus-updates site with updates and resources for navigating the COVID-19 virus
Safety is our top priority.
We will continue to monitor developments and will update our response and guidelines to best meet the needs of our families, children, clients and employees. Please send your questions or comments to COVID19info@chsnc.org.
We appreciate your continued support of Children’s Home Society of North Carolina in the days ahead and always.
Stay safe and be well.
Our specialists meet with hundreds of families and young people several times each week in homes and communities across the state. They will use these sessions to reinforce health education around limiting the virus’s spread and to help families access health care and testing if needed. Please be assured that our staff continues to remain accessible, and we will continue to provide professional support and service to our clients. We will ensure families and young people know the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) an NCDHHS. Their recommendations include:
- Wash hands frequently and for 20 seconds. Washing hands often under clean, running water can help prevent the spread of germs. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60-95% alcohol.
- Stay home when you are sick. If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
- Cover coughs and sneezes. Use a tissue to cover coughs and sneezes, then dispose of the tissue. When a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces or objects. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work, or school, especially when someone is ill.
We have made the decision to conduct many program events virtually, if possible. We will continue to monitor the situation and update the website. If you have any questions, please contact your local office.
Child-Focused Recruitment, Intensive Family Preservation Specialists, and Foster Care staff perform a health assessment screening over the phone before conducting an in-person session. Based on that assessment, we can help families or young people make appropriate health decisions and plan for safe sessions for our staff.
Additional Training and Sanitizing
Janitorial staff is increasing the frequency of cleaning in high-traffic areas in all our buildings. Our offices have the supplies needed and are following guidelines as outlined by the NCDHHS and CDC.
In this time of uncertainty and unprecedented change – hope remains. Together we can do extraordinary things. Over the past months, we have seen the entire world come together in the spirit of kindness with a willingness to help each other. Through celebrating doctors and nurses, appreciating essential employees who stock our grocery stores, helping our neighbors and friends, or by donations to community organizations – all with a focus to help us get through this global pandemic together.
Vulnerable children and families in our community need your support now more than ever.
We made the decision to postpone or cancel many CHS-sponsored events (internally and externally). To the extent possible, board meetings, event committee meetings, etc. continue to be held virtually. Recognizing that support for our children and families is even more vital in times of crisis, we are continuing to review our upcoming donor and fundraising events and evaluate how to proceed so that we may continue to serve our families with the philanthropic support of our donors. We are diligently and carefully discussing how to move forward with rescheduling if/when it is possible and considering other avenues to engage with our CHS community. We will share details as they become available. We are closely monitoring the situation and will provide updates but, in the meantime, the health and well-being of our clients, team members, donors, boards, and others are far too important.
On Tuesday, July 6, the CHS offices reopened for normal operations with the following COVID protocols still in place:
- All staff and visitors will continue to sign in and out
- PPE – masks, gloves and hand sanitizer available for staff and visitors
- Staff required to clean shared spaces after use
- Use of PPE and Health Pre-screens for in-person, face-to-face meetings or trainings
- Continue use of firstname.lastname@example.org to keep capacity manageable
- Encourage internal and external virtual meetings when possible
- Encourage staff not to come to work when ill
New protocols in place:
- Allow fully vaccinated staff and visitors to not wear their masks in public areas in the office if they choose
- We will not know who is vaccinated and who is not – we are following the honor system
- Encourage staff to wear a mask if they feel more comfortable doing so
- Removing the temperature taking requirement upon signing in
- Kitchens (where available) are open
- No sharing of food (buffets or pot-lucks)
- Staff required to clean space after use
As always, CHS strongly encourages all staff to get the vaccine, especially as the new Delta variant is rapidly spreading in the United States, including North Carolina. CHS has voluntarily extended FFCRA Leave until September 30 which reimburses staff for their time away from work to receive the vaccine if it’s during work hours and also pays Emergency Sick Pay for side effects related to the vaccine. For more information about Emergency Sick Pay, please email email@example.com. This extension shows the agency’s commitment and belief in the vaccine. We realize that some of our coworkers and visitors may not be eligible for the vaccine due to health reasons or may choose not to receive the vaccine, therefore we must protect one another and be respectful of each individual’s circumstance and preferences.
The option for an Alternative Work Arrangement is available for staff whose Office of Record is in a CHS Office/Building. The Request for an Alternative Work Arrangement form is attached. Please consult your direct supervisor when considering this option and return the form to your direct supervisor for their consideration.
While we are easing some restrictions, we are aware that the state is still below targeted goals for vaccinating 70% of those eligible. Therefore, we must remain vigilant and ensure the safety of our employees and the families we serve. The COVID 19 Response Team will continue to monitor the pandemic situation and will review and revise these protocols as necessary. Thank you for your continued adherence to CHS guidelines.
Please direct any questions, comments, or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.