Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Coronavirus: Red Cross offers virtual care center for families who have lost loved ones

(WYDaily file/Courtesy of Unsplash)
(WYDaily file/Courtesy of Unsplash)

The American Red Cross Virginia has launched a Virtual Family Assistance Center to support families struggling with loss and grief due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

People can go here to access a support hub with special virtual programs, information, referrals and services to support families in need, according to a news release from the Red Cross.

The hub will also connect people to other community resources provided by the Red Cross and other partners. People without internet access can call 833-492-0094 for help.

“This is an incredibly difficult time for everyone, but especially for those who have lost a loved one due to COVID-19,” said Michelle Ellis Young, executive director American Red Cross of Coastal Virginia. “Not only have these families experienced the unexpected passing of a loved one, but they are also facing additional challenges caused by this public health emergency. We want them to know that the Red Cross is here to provide compassion and support as they grieve.”

Many families have experienced a disrupted bereavement and grief process due to restrictions related to COVID-19. The Red Cross has set up a virtual team of specially trained mental health, spiritual care and health services volunteers who are:

  • Connecting with families over the phone to offer condolences, support and access to resources that may be available
  • Providing support for virtual memorial services for families, including connecting with local faith-based community partners
  • Hosting online classes to foster resilience and facilitate coping skills
  • Sharing information and referrals to state and local agencies as well as other community organizations including legal resources for estate, custody, immigration or other issues

All Family Assistance Center support will be provided virtually and is completely confidential and free.

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John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzohttp://wydaily.com
John Mangalonzo (john@localdailymedia.com) is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.

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