Covid-History Item Type Metadata
Cambridge, New York
When did the impact of COVID-19 first occur to you? How did your reaction to COVID-19 change between then and the first case in your town?
I work in New Rochelle, my non profit provides after school programming we were the first large spread in NY and it caused us to shut down and scramble to pay our staff and refund our parents
How is your life different now than it was before the pandemic?
I work exclusively from home, before I commutes down a few days a week, I have been blessed to have more time with my two College aged children but regret the disruption in their lives.
How are you feeling? What are you doing to relieve stress?
So Stressed! Work has never ended as we struggle to keep our no profit afloat, and partner with the ever changing needs of the schools and families we serve. At home juggling the emotions of three children and husband has become full time often at the expense of my sanity. I cope by realizing the work I do will help others and I grab what ever time I can for me and I do cherish this extra time with my older children. We are blessed while so many face more challenges.
What have you noticed has changed in your community since the outbreak? What has surprised you?
Being in a smaller community there seems to be an extra effort to be cheerful and kind - even when parents are frustrated with school they seem to engage more respectfully. I am shocked by how many want to ignore and avoid what is happening and keep going forward with blinders.
Are you a business owner who has had to close? If you are still open, how have you had to adjust how your business operates?
I am CFO of non profit which closed when schools did - we have struggled to keep essential staff and laid off part time. We are trying to manage the cost to repopen against what we can charge families - we lost so much when we had to refund families that we have little resources to start up again
Are you an essential employee? What do you do? What precautions are being taken at your workplace? What precautions are implementing at home?
We are implementing all state CDC and OCFS guidelines to run our after school programs at a huge cost increase for masks, sanitizer, cleaning, reduced attendence and so on
Are you an employee who has been laid off or furloughed? Were you able to get unemployment? Were you able to retain your health insurance?
Are you working from home? What adjustments or challenges are you experiencing?
Yes but I had previously worked from home part time. I am in finance and it is easier for me than others but difficult when you can’t reach colleagues or be part of impromptu conversations
Do you have children at home? How’s it going?
Very hard all 3 hated online but made due. My two college aged students deferred their fall semester in the hope of returning for in person
If you’re a student, was school canceled? Were you able to complete your studies online? Do you think you’ll be back on campus in the fall?
Did you have to postpone any major life events? (e.g. Graduation, wedding, major birthday) What did you do instead?
High school graduation - very bummed as her school he so many senior traditions she missed but the school did their best
Do you have animals? Did you adopt a pet? How have they impacted your day?
We have 2 dogs and 2 cats and they have provided much love
What positive things did you contribute to or notice take place?
A lot of community building locally and a desire to figure out how to operate. In Cambridge there have been so many donations to local restaurants to feed our children in need - very supportive.
Did you or someone you know contract COVID-19? What was it like?
Yes my colleague at work, youn healthy man hit with several waves, and a few parents this is all down in westchester - no one seems to have had major impact from it
If you lost someone during the pandemic, how did you celebrate their lives?
What do you wish you knew before the pandemic began?
That toilet paper and paper towels would be gone honestly my daughter and her friend were concerned when the outbreak first happened in China. They study mandarin and were more in tune to the news there - I wish I had listened to her more seriously and prepared my non profit and myself more.
What would you want future generations to know about the 2020 pandemic? How would you recommend they prepare for it?
The news media played up panic and the politicians were quick to point fingers!! Every day people did their jobs and many at risk to their own health. I so appreciated the ability to buy groceries, get a delivery, grab take out - and we should celebrate them and not the ‘cult of celebrity’ we see on media. Use common sense, don’t think you are smarter or know more than the medical guidance. Don’t panic - you can survive on basic stuff and relish the company of family and simple pleasures. Doesn’t hurt to have A few Supplies on hand!
How do you think this pandemic will change how we behave going forward? What will the “new normal” look like?
It’s not going to change our behavior we see people misbehaving now. New normal will be dependent on prudent health management - I think we all realize what we are able to do without
Is there anything else you would like to add that hasn't already been asked above?
This was longer than I thought but makes you think - less media overkill would have made this more bearable - I think they were irresponsible as it caused panic for many people Who then flooded social media
Southern Adirondack Library System
Southern Adirondack Library System
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“Virginia,” Leaving Our Fingerprints on History, accessed December 8, 2022, https://fingerprints.sals.edu/omeka/items/show/224.