Phoenix-based nonprofit, Esperança provided care packages to the community after receiving a $25,000 emergency COVID-19 grant from Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.
Packages consisted of toilet paper, paper towels, disinfectant and activity books, according to a press release, noting that items were disbursed to 250 seniors living in HUD housing including Casa Pedro Ruiz, Paseo Abeytia, Casa Bill Soltero, Avondale Haciendas, Fillmore Gardens, Pine Towers, Guadalupe Huerta, Urban League and Aeroterra Senior Village.
“With the current health pandemic impacting our ability to provide our Phoenix program classes in-person, we knew that this grant would give us another way to continue to serve our community,” said Esperança President/CEO Jeri Royce in a prepared statement.
“As always, we listened to their needs and provided care packages based on what they told us they needed most.”
In upcoming weeks, Esperança will offer another 250 care packages of household necessities to low-income families throughout the Valley, the release said.
Esperança’s Phoenix program staff realized that it would be a challenge to continue providing in-person health education to the Latino community when COVID-19 hit the Phoenix-area, the release noted.
So, after brainstorming how to stay connected to this group that needed a lot of support, according to the release, the staff conducted weekly mental health check-ins with 250 former class participants.
Through these calls, they were able to provide the seniors with community resources, give them someone to talk to, and identify the household and medical supplies they needed.
During a recent call, Esperança’s Manager of Family Programs Xochitl Wilson learned of a senior in Esperança’s DEEP --- Diabetes Empowerment Education Program --- who was scared to go to the pharmacy for insulin because of being in a high-risk category for COVID-19; in addition to recently losing her job and unable to afford the next prescription, the release detailed.
“After Hearing about Margarita’s situation, I immediately advocated for Esperança to pay for the prescription. I picked up the prescription from the pharmacy and safely dropped off the insulin to Margarita,” said Xochitl Wilson in a prepared statement.
“We are committed to providing hope now more than ever.”
Esperança’s Phoenix program also continues to share oral health and nutrition education to the Latino community through its Spanish Facebook page, Esperanca en su Comunidad to not only its past participants, but a new larger audience, added the release.