April 15, 2021
COVID-19 has been hard for all of us. Here in Rockwood, this has been an especially challenging time for our community.
Compared to all Oregonians, our neighbors have been three times more likely to be infected by the virus which has not been the only challenge our community has faced. On average, Rockwood resident have been hit harder than Portlanders as it relates to joblessness, financial crisis, housing challenges, accumulating past-due rent, and more.
Before the COVID-19 crisis, about 40% of our neighborhood was food insecure, meaning that they did not know if they would eat that day. Since the pandemic, food insecurity is now above 60%.
While COVID-19 has been incredibly challenging for our community, it has been amazing to see Rockwood come together to support and care for one another.
Backed by the USDA Farmer to Food program, Multnomah County, local farmers in the Black, Latino, and immigrant/refugee community, we have been feeding 600 – 800 families every week since April 2020. At the same time, we also distribute an abundance of KN95 masks and hand sanitizer.
All of this is done in partnership with five to ten smaller local agencies, most of which are culturally specific to Rockwood.
The Oregon Health Authority has also contracted with us to do contact tracing, education, and wraparound services. This work forms the core of what we do at our Community Health Unit, East County Community Health (https://ecchealth.org/).
In the past year we have served our neighbors with over 410,000 meals and 63,000 KN-95 masks.
This week, we are hosting drive-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics at the Sunrise Center in collaboration with Wallace Medical. Our recently launched East County Community Health unit is leading these efforts.
Even as the immediate crisis begins to fade, we are well-positioned to provide ongoing, long-term, sustainable leadership to Rockwood and East County’s health challenges.
What can you do?
Donate today to support our ongoing COVID-19 relief work.
Signup for updates about our new East County Community Health initiative.