DC127 Through the Pandemic

DC127 Through the Pandemic

By: Weelay Gonyon
DC127 Family Support Coordinator

As we reflect on the one-year anniversary of the global shutdown caused by COVID-19, I am inspired by the resilience of the DC127 community- families and volunteers alike. Like many of us, the families inour program continue to struggle with the impact of the pandemic. Our staff and volunteers have journeyed with DC127 Families to ensure they thrive. Through our Communities for Families program, DC127 provides wrap around support to mitigate feelings of isolation and offer direct support to parents with limited resources.

As the Family Support Coordinator of the Communities for Families program, I am the first interaction our parents have when they reach out for support. The first step to sustainable change is the ability to understand you can’t do things alone.

I am consistently inspired by the resolve and determination of the parents we serve. We serve several families who started college and finished vocational programs in the midst of the pandemic. We engage families managing the digital divide to support their children’s virtual education. Our families are learning new technologies and attending our workshops.

Volunteers shifted their service during the pandemic. They went from face-face interactions to virtually providing emotional and practical support to families. They consistently and faithfully worked with families to help them achieve greater stability.

Family provides a strong foundation to sustain us in adulthood. DC127 preserves families: biological families, foster families, adoptive families. As we have grown this past year, our commitment has intensified to foster stability and a community of support around each unique family we serve. I am proud of the workwe accomplish- whether it was helping a grandfather raising his grandsons with academic support, providing one-on-one counseling to a young mother overwhelmed with anxiety, or the mom who vacations with her volunteer and describes their lasting relationship as “a loving family”.

As the country starts to slowly move forward, DC127 families will continue to overcome the instabilities they faced pre-COVID. I am happy to be a part of a team that strives to help make this transition as smooth as possible. It is beautiful to see the resilience of DC127 Families and it's a pleasure to talk with families and help them remove barriers to stability.