In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ascension Wisconsin Community Services has been a vital resource for the Milwaukee community for everything from hygiene products, food, and additional care. They banded together to reduce barriers to care for people who need it most.
The organization’s Social Resource Navigation Team supported inpatient case managers to provide real-time updates on available community-based resources to address food insecurity, access to medical/dental care and family resources.
When household cleaning supplies, toothbrushes and toothpaste were identified as significant community needs early in the pandemic, the team supported the community with a $10,000 donation of household cleaning supplies and dental hygiene kits to 15 community organizations and neighborhood associations in Milwaukee.
When many food pantries closed in the city during the pandemic, the team expanded the pantry at the Ascension Ebenezer Health Resource Center.
The resource center provides people with nutritious food, health and wellness screenings, preventive services and onsite support from Ascension Wisconsin nurses and community health workers.
The diabetic-friendly food pantry not only remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic but also extended its hours of operation to better serve people who were most in need. The team reorganized its operations so food boxes were pre-packaged and people could walk-up to the door, or pull up with a car to receive food while maintaining proper social distancing to ensure safety.