On August 3rd, after over 4 months, we welcomed back some our participants. The reopening is restricted to a few individuals but will gradually increase in the upcoming weeks.
With the new procedures in place, we were ready to greet our participants. Following PPE guidelines, participants wear masks and maintain at least six feet apart. We have implemented other measures for safety including visual cues – directional arrows and social distance circles on the floor.
After temperatures were taken, hand sanitizer used and lunch/snacks were put away, the participants were ready to start the day. Everyone watched a video explaining the importance of mask-wearing, hand washing, and social distancing - all which have become the new normal. The smiles under the masks might not have been visible, but the excitement was definitely felt.
Back to Work
At the end of the day staff members contacted each participant’s parent or caregiver. We received such positive feedback. One participant’s residential case manager said, "she really needed this [to come to The Douglas Center], it is so great to have her back at work, feeling good about herself and having a chance talk with her friends that she missed."
Everyone was so happy to be back. Rifath Khan, The Douglas Center’s CEO commented, “It gives us great joy to welcome our participants back in the building."
The participants worked, played games, talked with their friends and even had a musical jam session with our interns from Loyola University Chicago: Schoool of Social Work. We are proud to once again offer a safe work environment and home away from home for our participants.