Pivoting During the Pandemic

Over the past several weeks, the COVID-19 crisis has impacted the everyday lives of the people we serve, our volunteers, and our community. With mandated actions like “shelter in place” and “social distancing,” we’ve cancelled plans for our 50th Anniversary event and totally redesigned all of our services.

For the health and safety of our clients and employees, we closed our doors to walk-in traffic and installed an outdoor intercom system so we could speak with clients while they remained outside the building. Before long, a line began to form. We were flooded with 607 requests for financial aid between March 16 and April 16, six times our usual rate. We have dropped off food to over 200 Sunnyvale seniors sheltered in their homes and continue to deliver biweekly food to our 137 homebound clients. And since we’ve had to curtail physical donations for safety reasons, we are purchasing baby formula, diapers, and other critically essential items for families.

The need is great. But we’ve had help throughout this crisis. Individuals, businesses, community organizations, and foundations have all sent contributions and words of encouragement. The City of Sunnyvale made an early commitment of $250,000 to financially assist Sunnyvale residents in need. The city has also provided their staff as volunteers, including bilingual employees to help us follow up with client requests and drivers to deliver homebound food.

We may need to have a drive-through Backpack Day, a virtual Holiday Auction, and a Holiday Gift Card Center.

Many other significant donors are noted on this page—and we thank one and all for your continued support and assistance. The future is unclear, but we know how important it is to continue SCS programs and traditions that have always brought our community closer together.

We may need to have a drive-through Backpack Day, a virtual Holiday Auction, and a Holiday Gift Card Center.

It’s been our joy to share stories of our 50 years of service via our e-newsletter, and we look forward to celebrating with our community in creative ways in the months ahead. As we’ve done successfully for half a century, we will continue to serve those in need and work to prevent homelessness and hunger here in our local community.

Marie Bernard
Executive Director, Sunnyvale Community Services