The Iowa Department of Public Health has encouraged the practice of social distancing and with 35+ people in the emergency shelter it was especially hard for clients and staff to adhere to these suggestions as all living spaces; living rooms, the youth room, bathrooms, the kitchen, and bedrooms are shared spaces. DVIP staff have come up with ways to create separate spaces in our shelter by building makeshift walls and we are operating at half capacity, with every other bedroom vacant to provide as much social distancing as possible.
Staff and volunteers do their best to implement social distancing by only allowing 1-2 families in the common spaces at a time, providing masks/hand sanitizer, and by sanitizing common areas every hour. The housing department is working as fast as possible with our community to find open housing units in order to provide individuals and families their own spaces to properly social distance.
Since March 2020, DVIP has received emergency housing funding from the Community Foundation of Johnson County, Delta Dental and the Housing Trust Fund of Johnson County, and many individual community members including Carol deProsse, Natasha Wendt and Christoph Gorman.
After 40 years of working with victims-survivors, DVIP knows that intimate partner violence will not slow down during this pandemic, and it will likely increase the need for our services. We continue to seek emergency funding from other sources – if you would like to help us provide sustainable housing, click here.