One Year Into COVID-19 It’s not every day that you start a new job and then immediately have to close down the office indefinitely and send everyone home amidst a once-in-a-century pandemic. But that was my whirlwind experience when I joined YWCA Edmonton as our new CEO one year ago today. I hadn’t even met most of our staff yet before making that difficult decision after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mandated an historic stay-at-home order
YWCA Edmonton is here for you
The YWCA has operated in Edmonton for 113 years, supporting our community through two world wars, the great depression, the Spanish flu and more. For more than a century we have adapted, innovated, and done what needs to be done to support Edmontonians through extraordinary times.
We are working with YWCAs across Canada and Alberta to have a coordinated response when it comes to issues facing women and children during the pandemic.
During this pandemic we are once again adapting and being responsive to the needs of our community, remaining a reliable, steady source of support for Edmontonians.
We are listening and responding
YWCA Edmonton is working hard to limit COVID-19’s impact on the vulnerable women and families we are proud to serve:
Mental health supports are in high demand these days. Those in need of affordable mental health support are accessing first-rate care with our psychologists via telephone and video sessions. We are also offering remote counselling sessions to a women’s shelter through the YWCA in Nunavut.
Youth programs are being delivered directly into girls’ homes through their laptops and phones, helping them stay socially connected and informed even while not able to be together in the same physical space.
Sexual Health & Wellness
People needing sexual health support can speak directly to an expert via Live Chat through our website. Our team has also developed virtual sexual health education sessions to be used as a resource in the school curriculum teachings.
Our front-line support staff continue to support everyone we serve to ensure all those who come into our care are given every opportunity to live their best life, safely adhering to pandemic public health orders.
In adherence with current public health orders, we are unable to offer overnight camps this summer. Although we are unable to move forward with our overnight camping plans, Camp Yowochas began offering programs that could be safely facilitated: Cabin Rentals, Family Fun Days and Yowochas Learning Academy.
We will get through this together
This pandemic is unlike anything we have seen in our lifetimes. This global health pandemic has also triggered a major economic crisis. We know that the most vulnerable populations continue to be most affected through these crisis times, and we remain unwavering in our commitment to be here to support those who need us.
The YWCA has always been a leader in providing community supports, and we are now focused on helping our community face the repercussions of this crisis. You can learn more about our Recommendations for Economic Recovery here.
Together, we are always stronger; your help today creates better futures for all those we serve. We are in this together, and even the current physical distancing measures won’t stop us from getting through these challenging times.