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April 2, 2020| Faith, Community and Non-Profit Leader Covid-19 Check-In Meeting

Our weekly check-in meeting is open to anyone interested in supporting compassionate community response to our most vulnerable neighbors in this time of crisis. Meetings are held online every Thursday from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Please email LeDayne Polaski for Zoom access code. We look forward to seeing you!


Minutes by Sally Herlong

Host LeDayne McLeese Polaski/MeckMIN opened with a prayer: In the midst of the present crisis (from the Green Faith Site) by Father Joseph McShane

Small Business Administration’s Forgiveable Loan Webinar

Laurel Grauer from the Jewish Federation of Greater Charlotte shared information about a webinar to be held at 12:00 noon, Friday, April 3 via Zoom:

Free and all are welcome to participate

General SBA resources and information:

  1. CharMeck Responds Coalition Casey Crimmins (

  2. Purpose is to bridge gap of community needs of and for volunteers

  3. Provide collective response to avoid duplication of efforts in hopes of spreading resources and love by coordinating efforts

  4. Providing infrastructure to support CMS meal distributions sites

  5. Trying to meet current and anticipate future needs

  6. NEED as many volunteers as possible

  7. Being under this umbrella gives you exemptions from the stay at home order FOR DIRECT SERVICE

  8. Anyone going to aid others exempt



Reports from Not-for-Profits

Loaves and Fishes – Tina Postel and Shay Merritt

  1. Requests and assistance are at an all time high

  2. NEW: added mobile panty “drive throughs” – box truck going to different areas

  3. Provide 1 week’s worth of non-perishables

  4. NEW: able to provide some fresh produce

  5. See website for planned locations and further details

  6. Can serve 100 people in 90 min; yesterday served 680

  7. Limiting number of folks going in and out of building

  8. It would help if want to collect and donate food, please limit to 1 type item (for ex. all cereal or all pasta) so L&F won’t have to sort

  9. Continue to receive many calls from seniors because they can’t leave home

  10. Piloting a way to accept referrals for home deliveries to 65+ year-old and high risk persons that can’t leave home

  11. Referrals from medical providers only

  12. Food delivered to doorsteps

  13. Make referrals to main line 704-523-4333 – referrals must come from an approved partner

  14. If you want to make referrals and don’t have a code as an approved partner, you can register now – see the L&F website for information and a list of what you’ll need

  15. You can call again in a week if the person/family you are referring still has needs

  16. Clients can receive assistance 8 times in a calendar year (at least 1 week apart) – this may be adjusted as the Covid19 crisis continues


Urban Ministry/Men’s Shelter – Veronica Ritchie

  1. Continue to prepare for crucial weeks ahead

  2. Putting protocol in place

  3. Trying to concentrate on assistance with basic needs and transportation

  4. MOST CRUCIAL NEED: masks for staff and most at-risk folks

  5. Question: Can you use homemade masks?

  6. Don’t need medical grade

  7. Link to info from Atrium in re masks – video and graphic version:

  8. Comments from other attendees:

  9. Amy Dean: Park Rd Baptist sewing group is wanting to make masks

  10. Lucy Crain: JoAnne Fabrics is also giving free material for those making masks

  11. Click here for a video tutorial on making masks

  12. Jolin McElroy: a quilting group in our church willing to make masks

  13. Click here for info about the question of wearing masks

  14. Greg P (R.N.): It is still controversial about how much a mask protects. It will not harm. The harm is if we in the community are taking masks from healthcare providers. A homemade mask is not denying a useful mask to someone on the front line. I believe that the homemade masks are OK in the community and may be useful.

  15. Still NEED: Grab-n-Go Lunches – they are still serving HUNDREDS of people each day

  16. Contact Lauren Cranford – 704-609-8680

  17. Serving breakfasts, lunches and dinners

Crisis Assistance – Adam Cline

  1. Restated how rapidly things are moving

  2. Agency remains closedfor safety of customers and employees

  3. No utilities will be disconnected through the end of May

  4. A halt on evictions in place until May 17 (check the new Executive Order #124)

  5. Have been able to house 1000 in hotels thru COVID Response Fund and private donors

  6. FIRST POINT OF CONTACT: 2-1-1 – this is the only route to receive assistance (2-1-1 is managing screenings)

  7. NEED: financial donations and prayers

  8. NOT accepting clothes and other material items for now, please

QC Family Tree (Enderly Park area) – Helms Jarrell

  1. Think tanks on 1) trying to learn how to decentralize and 2) school alternatives for neighborhood

  2. Distributing care packages to 25 households 1x week or every other week

  3. Contact QCFT if want to assist with think tanks or assist in other ways

  4. Will put out a farmer’s market table if folks/houses of faith want to donate community garden items (some congregations, used to donating the food they grow to Friendship Trays, are looking for options to share their food) – QC Family Tree is willing to accept produce and has means to share it

  5. we update with announcements every 2 days

  6. www.familytree.orgis the organizational website

NOTE — Jolin Wilks McElroy and Jonathan Coppedge-Henley are also willing to accept and distribute produce. See below.

GreenFaith – Amy Brooks

  1. Offering 2 classes: 11:00am and 4:00pm for respite and spiritual time

  2. Assisting with how to organize and create support for neighbors



  5. At LeDayne’s request, Rev. Glencie Rhedrick offered prayer for these non-profit leaders and all frontline workers

  6. SPECIAL REQUEST from the county’s Emergency Operations Center – Stephanie Payne

  7. Because the homeless population is increasing and because of need to increase social distancing, EOC is seeking options to house people who are currently unsheltered. They came to us with a request that houses of faith consider housing people.

NOTE: We had a long conversation with Stephanie and MANY questions and concerns were raised about the feasibility and safety of this request. After this conversation and other conversations with other faith and community leaders, the EOC has withdrawn their original request. Therefore, we are not including notes on the conversation in these minutes, though they are available if you are interested.

MeckMIN has continued in conversation with EOC, government, nonprofit, and grassroots groups to create a feasible plan which will not contribute to community spread of the virus. We are currently working on a plan that would involve a public/private partnership to address this crucial need to save lives. We will share that plan as soon as it is available.

Other Comments Shared by Attendees

  1. Kristen Anderson: find service opportunities from home right now; in the process of adding Covid-19 as a search tool

  2. Jolin McElroy: The Dilworth Soup Kitchen is still serving to-go lunches on Mondays and Fridays for the noon meal. Serving is beginning at 11 am on Mondays and Fridays. They will gladly accept donations, including fresh produce.

  3. The Kitchen also gives out a bag of groceries with lunch on Mondays and Fridays

  4. 1200 East Blvd., Charlotte—corner of East Blvd and Dilworth Road, East


  6. Jolin Wilks McElroy

  7. Jonathan Coppedge-Henley: I’d surely love to know if anyone in East Charlotte has fresh produce. Our neighborhood could surely use it! Jonathan Coppedge-Henley

  8. Rick Vosteen: I’m retired from the American Red Cross, and volunteer with Salvation Army, N.C. Baptist Men, Team Rubicon, and several other VOAD and NVOAD members. Contact me if I can be of help in any way

Closing Thought: It is not your responsibility to finish the work of perfecting the world but neither are you free to desist from it. (Traditional Jewish Teaching)


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