MA VOAD Zoom Meeting

Start Date: 2021-04-27

Description: MA VOAD member activities over the past months have included, almost exclusively, major effort and expenditure feeding and housing large numbers of homeless/evicted/unemployed people due to Covid. One apartment building fire in New Bedford MA resulted in over 40 homeless and 2 deaths—this was primarily a Guatemalan community, many members were sensitive to immigration status issues and spoke a rare Spanish dialect, so a resource center planned by ARC and the Salvation Army wasn’t utilized. A special translator was located who helped the people with specific (especially immigration status) issues. I reported on Hope participation at the Boulder shooting resource center and the Zoom therapy dog sessions Brinkley and Meg have been having every two weeks for the past year with Stanford University, Stanford School of Medicine and associated hospitals (Brinkley’s brother Oliver in California is a Hope member and invited us to join them at Stanford). I also reported on two excellent books mentioned in a FEMA Region 1 session to which I was invited last month: “The Body Keeps the Score. Brain, Mind and Body in the Healing of Trauma” and “Upside. The New Science of Post-Traumatic Growth”. Both of these are great reads for the kind of exposure we have in Hope. In New England everybody still seems very, very cautious about social distancing and not ready to interact closely with dogs. Last month, getting my dose at the UMass vaccination clinic, I was invited to bring the dogs to future clinics (Brinkley and Meg are well known presenters at UMass MRC meetings and disaster preparedness drills)—BUT one person in the vaccine line had their dog with them and that dog and person were SHUNNED by almost all of the other people present!

Agency: MA VOAD
Teams: None