COVID-19 Updates

In the midst of the pandemic, Covenant House continues to provide 24/7 comprehensive care & support to the most vulnerable homeless youth and children in our community. In early November, we were caring for 162 youth and children, the most kids ever in our history. Now, we are averaging over 220 young people in our care. We will continue to feed, clothe, and shelter our young residents, while also meeting their physical and behavioral healthcare needs during this critical time. 

As of July 30th, we have implemented new policies in response to a small number of youth and staff who recently tested positive for Covid-19. We are committed to protecting the health of our residents and our brave front-line staff, and we are doing everything in our power to prevent a further outbreak of this dangerous virus.

Until further notice, Covenant House will be limiting the intake of new residents (at the discretion of our Program Director). We will continue to practice a number of important policies that were implemented in March that have helped us prevent the virus’s spread on our campus, including:

  • Requiring all youth & staff to wear protective face coverings.
  • Promoting and facilitating daily temperature taking, washing of hands, and social distancing.
  • Instituting a strict campus curfew.
  • Providing “to-go” meals to limit congregation at meal times.

Many of our young people survived the trauma of Hurricane Katrina before their 5th birthday. This crisis represents a desperate new challenge. Despite all that they have experienced, they are filled with hope and promise. Their resilience is truly remarkable.

Please consider making a special gift to support them in this time of extraordinary crisis.

As I prayed this morning, I asked God: “What are you calling me to do today?” Often, the “stuff” of the day – and my own humanness – blocks out my ability to hear God answer. Today, however, I sensed God was calling me to listen.

“Miss Archie, Miss Melba and Mr. Steve helped me to heal. They helped launch me on a new path. It was the first time in my life I was truly proud of myself. . . I came back to work at Covenant House, believing I could reach these young women.”

“The stay-at-home order gave me a lot of time to reflect – and to meditate and pray… after COVID-19, I want to finish up college. I just want to be a good mother. Jasmine’s happiness is my number one goal. I want her light to shine on others.”

Every day we are blessed to see the face of God in the faces of our young people. Always a blessing prior to the pandemic, it’s even more so now. The beauty of our young people—with or without masks—is the oxygen that propels us forward.

Our young people are absolutely amazing. In the midst of the pandemic, they are able to find the space in their hearts to worry about the life and safety of those who have more than let them down… those who should have loved them unconditionally.

I asked Melissa one last question: “When you were being drugged and raped, night after night. Did you get mad at God?” She looked at me quizzically. “No… sometimes when the drugs were wearing thin, I would wake up and pray: please God save me.”

“Mama Foots” is an angel – a woman of deep faith. Every morning, she leads a group of the young men in prayer: giving thanks for blessings (like a new job), asking for strength and fortitude, and now… seeking protection from the Coronavirus.

As a Crisis Care Center providing critical 24/7 care to homeless youth in our community, we are on the front lines of this pandemic. We are committed to keeping our doors open to provide safety, shelter, and support to every young person who comes to us in need.

Tisha’s test results came back: she had indeed acquired the COVID-19 virus… The doctor texted: “Tisha’s water just broke. She is hypertensive, and her liver enzymes are elevated.”