Photo by Andrew Thoms
In difficult and uncertain times, it is important for us to hold together as a community, and take precautions ahead of time, instead of doing too little too late.
Right now, distancing ourselves from others may feel especially hard when compounded by the anxieties we are feeling for ourselves, our community, and our loved ones. We want now more than ever to spend time together as a community. Remember though, that while practicing social distancing, you aren't actually alone—we are doing this together. We at SCS find comfort knowing that so many of us are making a compassionate and courageous act for the strength and resiliency of our community. Through temporary isolation, we take care of each other.
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, we at SCS are joining other local organizations and businesses and temporarily shutting down our doors. Our team is focused right now on helping our community and our partners respond to this crisis. Situations like these are exactly why we strive to build sustainable and resilient communities. We are especially working across our network in the Sustainable Southeast Partnership to figure out how Southeast Alaska can respond to this crisis. While there are still no known cases of COVID-19 in Sitka, we know that it is always better to be proactive.
During this time, the best way for you to reach us is by emailing us at [email protected] and through our social media platforms. It is with a heavy heart that we must cancel or postpone all upcoming SCS, 4-H, and Sitka Kitch events. For more information or if you have any questions, please contact the Sitka Kitch at [email protected] or Jill, our 4-H leader, at [email protected]
At SCS, Chandler O'Connell is shifting her position to focus on supporting community health and wellness at this time. Sitka Mutual Aid - COVID-19 is our first project to support the community we love, and a resource to support each other during the COVID-19 public health crisis. This program matches requests for help with offers of support. To start off, we will coordinate supply drop offs to people's doorsteps and provide up to $50 per request for those with financial need, as long as funds last (thanks to a $1,000 starting contribution from SCS).
Huge thanks to all the Sitka individuals, businesses, governments and organizations who are providing diverse forms of community care. Staying at home, avoiding large crowds, practicing social distancing, cancelling unnecessary travel plans, and washing our hands are just some of the important actions we must take to slow this virus down. By doing this, we can limit pressure on our healthcare systems and decrease the spread of this virus to our elders and those with pre-existing health conditions who are the most at risk.
It is also crucial for us to rely on the advice of trusted experts as a sea of misinformation also spreads. During the upcoming weeks we will sharing on our platforms accurate and helpful resources, community updates, resources, inspiration, and ideas for engaging with your loved ones while isolated.
In this hard time, it's as important as ever for us to continue organizing and advocating for a sustainable future and the places that we love. We love you Sitka! Stay safe out there.