FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — While many of us are encouraged to hunker down at home as we wait for the spread of the coronavirus to slow our homeless population doesn’t have that option.
Wednesday, when the first positive COVID-19 case was reported in Northwest Arkansas 7Hills Homeless Center in Fayetteville shut down normal operations at its day center and offices.
Now, 7Hills has moved to limited services providing basic essentials like food bags, warm clothing, and mail to clients Tuesdays and Fridays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
“Think about what if you were diagnosed with COVID-19 and you were living on the street. They don’t have access to the basic over-the-counter medication that a lot of us immediately turn to and they don’t have transportation and access to the medical care that they might need,” said Jo Kaye Bandy, a Board Member at 7Hills Homeless Center.
7Hills staff say they’ve educated the homeless on how to check for symptoms and how to distance themselves from others and are working with partner agencies to come up with a logistical plan to get people who fear they have COVID-19 the help they need.
Since the pandemic, 7Hills has seen a decrease in donations and is still collecting supplies.