Letter from Executive Director, 4/16/2020
I am writing to you today to update you on what’s been happening at The Arc of Monmouth in the last few weeks since we closed most of our programs because of the Covid-19 outbreak.
It has been a tough few weeks, with as you can imagine, many challenges. Sadly, we did lose one of our residents due to complications from the virus very early on. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family, friends, and those who cared for her in her Group Home.
The health and safety of our residents and staff will continue to be a top priority. Thankfully, contact with the virus has been limited and the health of all staff and residents is monitored daily. I am pleased to say the majority of our residents remain at home safe and healthy.
None of this would have been possible without the dedication and commitment of all our employees; especially those on the front line who care for our residents every day. Their continued efforts are greatly appreciated.
It is uncertain how much longer these current conditions are going to be in place, but my commitment to you is that we will keep you informed every step of the way towards our reopening. Governor Murphy has in recent days begun to speak about how the State will reopen for business. The Arc of Monmouth is closely monitoring all these updates and will follow all the recommendations and guidance provided when it comes to reopening our programs. We all want to return to some degree of ‘normality’ as soon as possible.
If you have any questions regarding program opening please call Kristy Ford at (732) 493-1919 ext. 125 and she will be able to direct you to the appropriate person to answer your questions.
Please stay safe and well, and I look forward to welcoming everyone back soon.
Robert S. Angel
Statement Released by The Arc of New Jersey Executive Director, Tom Baffuto 4/8/2020
The Arc of New Jersey’s Executive Director Tom Baffuto released the following statement regarding the “It’s Hit Our Front Door’: Homes for the Disabled See a Surge of COVID-19” article that appeared in the New York Times on April 8. “Our hearts go out to the families and caregivers of the individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in New York who have lost their lives due to COVID-19. We recognize that we are living in an incredibly unsettling time, but it’s important for people with I/DD and their families to understand the multitude of precautions taking place in New Jersey. All of the day programs across the state were closed by March 17 when the threat of the virus became apparent and Chapters of The Arc implemented shelter in place procedures immediately thereafter. Comprehensive emergency response plans were enacted and our local county Chapters, and their extraordinary Direct Support Professionals, are continuing to assist and support clients while abiding by screening policies, monitoring staff and clients for potential symptoms, and engaging in intense sanitizing of homes. While a portion of those served in the community have tested positive for COVID-19, we are working diligently to care for those who are ill while protecting and shielding others. In this unprecedented time, we are doing our very best for those we serve and represent. The Arc of New Jersey is here to advocate and support anyone in need of help as we push through toward better days ahead.”
Executive Director Update, 4/1/2020
As we near the end of the third week of day program closures and with our residents still confined to their homes, I thought it important to write and update everyone on just how we are dealing with this crisis at The Arc of Monmouth.
The front-line staff who come to work every day and provide care to our served individuals have done, and continue to do, an outstanding job in caring 24/7 for our residents. The staff’s flexibility and desire to meet each challenge this situation has thrown at us speaks volumes about them as individuals. We could not do what we do without them.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, the Management Team, and most importantly, our served individuals, we say a huge “thank you”.
-Robert Angel, Executive Director
General Program Updates from The Arc of Monmouth
Our top priority is the safety and health of our served individuals, their families, and our staff. The Arc of Monmouth will continue to follow guidelines and recommendations made by the CDC and the state of New Jersey. Our executive team continues to monitor the situation and is taking every precaution to be able to respond rapidly.
The Arc of Monmouth continues to support 87 residents in our group homes, plus everyone in the supported apartments and independent living programs. We are so thankful for the dedicated direct support employees. Group homes continue to be staffed 24/7 and the staff have been finding fun activities to keep residents engaged and entertained while staying safe at home. Direct support staff continue to check in with those in supported or independent apartments to meet their needs. Health services team members regularly check in with all residents regarding both their physical and mental well-being.
Day programs will remain closed until determined safe to reopen. This includes the following programs: Branches, Eatontown, Green Grove, Shore, and Western Monmouth Adult Day Programs, the Work Opportunity Center, The Achievement Zone, and the Kach College Program.
Recreation activities are cancelled indefinitely. Refunds or credit will be provided where applicable. There have been two virtual fitness/yoga classes over Zoom video. Please visit arcofmonmouth.org/recreation or follow The Arc of Monmouth on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to stay up to date when these offerings are available.
Do you or your family need help?
Dial 2-1-1 for help. New Jersey has set up a special hotline dedicated to coronavirus information and community resources to help everyone through this difficult time. Visit New Jersey's COVID-19 website here.
Join Our Response Team
While our resources are all focused on the current threat, much of our normal funding is not coming in.
We know this is an uncertain time for everyone. If you have the means to give, we are extremely grateful. Every dollar supports people with I/DD to live a full and meaningful life. Click here to donate
There are many things you can do to make a difference. Click here to help
Click to Download the Letter to Caregivers 3/16/20