The outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) has been stressful for many people, especially for people with a developmental disability. Having to cope with managing changes in routine due to thevirus, and the impacts of quarantine and social distancing were creating challenges for one Central New York family. And then they faced another disruption, they lost their ability to take care of their laundry needs.
A Care Manager in the Central New York Region was helping to support this family, including the member who has complex neurological issues that put him at high risk for COVID-19 infection, and his mom. The mom also has health issues and provides the 1:1 support for her son.
They live together in an apartment in Syracuse but did not have access to a washer and dryer. To take care of their household laundry needs,, the mom used the laundry facilities in her mother’s senior living facility. Once the COVID-19 stay home order went into place, the senior care facility was shut off to outside visitors, so mom could no longer go there to wash clothes. She was also concerned that if she used a public laundromat, she would put their health at risk.
The Care Manager checked with some of the family’s natural supports to see if they could bring their laundry to someone else‘s home, but that there was not a workable option. She then attempted to access Family Support Services funding for them to help buy a washing machine. That request was denied. The Care Manager and mom then looked for a used washing machine on Craig’s List, Facebook Marketplace, and other online resource tools. The Care Manager also reached out to her Central NY Care Manager colleagues to see if anyone knew of a washing machine that could be donated. In sharing their need to a wider network, an anonymous donor through a local church offered to pay for a new washing machine, including the cost for installation.
Both member and his mom are incredibly grateful to the donor and to their Care Manager who put a great deal of time and effort into finding a solution to the problem of finding a washing machine. Taking care of their laundry needs is solved!