Articles

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources and Information

 

02/12/2021:

Dear Friends,

 

We’d like to wish you a very Happy and Healthy New Year.  We’re hoping that this year sees a return to normalcy, that we have the opportunity to get back to our face-to-face lives.  In the meantime, however, we remain positive and productive in our virtual setting.

 

Speaking of positive – and fun! – last month we hosted our first-ever virtual fundraising event, Eyes on the Future.  We had more than 100 guests in virtual attendance, a hilarious sunglass contest, and a great time connecting with each other.  We truly did set our sights on the future and celebrated with joy!

 

We also hosted a fabulous Valentine’s Day “Spread the Love” drive-through event.  Fifty families drove through the Lighthouse to pick up lunch, books and activities for clients, dessert-making kits and goodies for all. Plus, food boxes, generously donated by members of St. Gregory Catholic Church, were distributed to families in need.  Everyone truly enjoyed this “heart” warming event! 

 

We hope that you’re also finding joy as all of us work together to put COVID-19 in the past.  As I’ve mentioned before, we’re so proud to continue to serve you during these challenging times.  And I’d be remiss if I didn’t offer a big thank you to our terrific team – rehab, development, operations, workforce and finance – everyone’s been just amazing.

 

As you know, as we look ahead, we’ve developed a comprehensive, best-practice plan for reopening, with safety as our number one priority.

 

Our reopening will be a slow, meticulous, well thought-out process.  Before we open the doors, the entire building will be deep cleaned and sanitized, disinfectant stations have been installed, and a variety of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies have been purchased. Every decision that is being made is designed to create measures that protect staff, clients and visitors, all of which adhere to social distancing and Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines.

 

Once clients and staff come back into our completely refreshed building, we’ll require all people to answer screening questions, have their temperature checked at entry, wear masks, and adhere to all social distancing measures in place.

 

In terms of the actual reopening, our plan consists of four phases. In our first phase, we’ll open with approximately 25 percent of our on-site service offerings.  Over the following three phases, we’ll continue to add services until we reach 75 percent.  As we move through this process, we’ll constantly monitor the COVID situation and make adjustments accordingly.  As we work through each phase, all staff will be asked to clean their areas continually, operations staff will clean the entire building every two hours, and a thorough cleaning will take place after hours every day.

 

While reopening presents its own set of challenges, we’re extremely excited to see you back at the Lighthouse!  If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.

 

Happy New Year to you!!

 

Ellyn Drotzer, MSW, LCSW

President  & CEO

 

P.S.   With your safety top of mind, we continue to adjust the timing of our reopening plans based on Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations.  For the latest reopening information, please visit our website at www.lhob/covid19.org or call (954) 463-4217, ext. 143.

09/24/2020:

Dear Friends,

I’m pleased to report that the Lighthouse of Broward continues to offer programming seamlessly in a virtual format. We’ve figured out how to make the most of this ever-challenging environment – and we hope you have too!

Many thanks once again to our entire team for making this monumental shift, and making it look easy. I’m so appreciative of the efforts of our rehab team, development, operations, workforce and finance. They continue to go above and beyond to serve our wonderful clients and to ensure the Lighthouse runs smoothly. I’m also thankful for our board of directors for providing excellent, thoughtful leadership during this time of adversity. I’m so grateful for you all.

As we look ahead, we continue to fine tune our plans for reopening to ensure the health and safety of our clients. At this point, the Lighthouse leadership has decided to keep our facility closed until October 31. In the interim, we will monitor the status of COVID-19 in our community on a weekly basis through the end of October. Then, with great care to follow Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations, we will evaluate the situation and make a determination with regard to reopening.

As I shared in our last newsletter, we’ve developed a comprehensive, best-practice plan for reopening, with safety as our number one priority. Our reopening will be a slow, meticulous, well thought-out process. Before we open the doors, the entire building will be deep cleaned and sanitized. Disinfectant stations have been installed, and a variety of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies have been purchased. Every decision we make is designed to create measures to protect staff, clients and visitors, all of which adhere to social distancing and CDC guidelines.

Once we reopen our completely refreshed building, we’ll require all people to answer screening questions, have their temperature checked at entry, wear masks, and adhere to all social distancing measures in place.

As a reminder, our reopening plan consists of four phases. In our first phase, we’ll open with approximately 25 percent of our on-site service offerings. Over the following three phases, we’ll continue to add services until we reach 75 percent. As we move through this process, we’ll constantly monitor the COVID situation and make adjustments accordingly. As we work through each phase, all staff will be asked to clean their areas continually, operations staff will clean the entire building every two hours, and a thorough cleaning will take place after hours every day.

We’re excited to have you back at the Lighthouse – in person! Stay tuned for ongoing updates, and of course, feel free to reach out with any questions.

Stay well and healthy,

Ellyn Drotzer, MSW, LCSW
President & CEO
Lighthouse of Broward

09/16/2020: The Lighthouse will remind close and operating remotely until October 31. Our CEO Ellyn Drotzer, Board, management team will continue monitoring the Covid-19 impact in Broward on a weekly basis. 

08/28/2020:

The Lighthouse of Broward remains open remotely. We are continuing to offer our services 2550+ blind and visually impaired babies to seniors centered on training and rehabilitation, including orientation and mobility instruction, group counseling, diabetes management, job readiness classes, and more, through re-imagined programming transformed into a digital platform. Case managers are in constant contact with clients to assess and handle any critical needs. We are maintaining staff at 100%, with no furloughs. 

 

We will continue to update this page periodically with information on our plans for the coming months and the new year. 

Resources

LHOB and Community Resources are listed below.

 

LHOB Remote Support

Covid-19 support for Past and Present LHOB Clients

This support group is to help participants manage anxiety related to the isolation that has occurred during this difficult time of social distancing. Counselors will discuss strategies for dealing with stress and anxiety. Members of this group can connect; share their experiences, coping strategies, and their strength and hope.         

The meeting will take place via Uber, every Wednesday from 1:00 PM-2:00 PM. For more information or to RSVP, contact Alyssa Davis at (954) 463-4217 EXT 128 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Elaine Schiffman at 954-463-4217 EXT 131 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fitness Class

The Lighthouse is now hosting our fitness class for Lighthouse Clients via Zoom on Mondays and Wednesdays from 9 am to 10 am. There are only a few spots left! Please Contact Sam Kelly VP of Programs at 954-463-4217 ext. 118 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to RSVP.

 

Family & Caretaker Support Group

Our Family Support Group will meet via Zoom every 2nd Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. For more information, or to RSVP, contact Elaine at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 964-463-4217 ext. 131 or Alyssa at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 954-463-4217 ext. 128.

 

Caregiver Information Sessions

Caregivers Information Session will take place every 2nd Wednesday of the month via Zoom from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, contact Jessica Alessio at 954-463-4217 ext. 137.

You can help LHOB by donating to the Lighthouse of Broward COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund at www.lhob.org/COVID19EmergencyResponseFund - or mail your contribution to Lighthouse of Broward, 650 N. Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33311-7416. Thank you for your support!

 

 


COMMUNITY RESOURCES

About COVID-19

  • Exposure to COVID-19: Call (954) 412-7300 before going to any health care facility.
  • General information: Florida Health Department, https://floridahealthcovid19.gov/
  • Protect yourself: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/prevention.html
  • Questions about COVID-19: Contact the Florida Health Department’s dedicated COVID-19 call center at (866) 779-6121 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Food Provision and Delivery

  • Area Agency on Aging of Broward County: Food and frozen meal delivery.  Call 954-745-9779.
  • Feeding South Florida. Special COVID-19 Response Fund helps offers a food pantry, home delivery, and benefits application assistance. Apply at https://feedingsouthflorida.org/benefits-emergency-services/ to apply.
  • Grocery stores -senior shopping hours:
    • Publix, Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 to 8 a.m.
    • Winn Dixie, Monday through Friday, 8 to 9 a.m.
    • Sedano’s, Monday through Friday, 7 to 8 a.m.

Crisis Hotlines

  • Broward 211: Help with food, housing, healthcare, senior services, child care, additional services. Dial 2-1-1.
  • Greater Miami Jewish Federation Emergency Hotline: Emergency counseling, financial aid, food, and other services. Call (305) 576-6550.
  • Suicide Prevention /SAFENET: Call (305) 358-HELP (4357)
  • Department of Children and Families: Call (305) 377-5773
  • Elder Help Line: Call (305) 670-4357
  • The Disaster Distress Helpline can be reached at 1-800-985-5990, or by texting TalkWithUs to 66746
  • The National Domestic Violence Hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-7233 (TTY 1-800-787-3224).
  • The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Lifeline) can be reached at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text the Crisis Text Line (text HELLO to 741741). Both services are free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • The Veterans Crisis Line is a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text messaging service for veterans and their loved ones seeking help. Dial 1-800-273-8255, text 838255, or start a confidential online chat session at veteranscrisisline.net/get-help/chat.
  • Tips about daily life and coping with stress amid this pandemic can be found at the CDC’s website, Mental Health, and Coping During COVID-19.
  • Resources from the Department of Health and Human Services can be found at MentalHealth.gov

Connect

  • Lighthouse of Broward. Call us at (954) 463-4217.
  • Hadley School for the Blind. Connect online or via phone in Hadley’s discussion groups. Click https://hadley.edu/discussions/ for the schedule.

By now we are sure that everyone is more than aware of preventive measures to avoid the spread of germs and illness such as:

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Avoid touching eyes, mouth and nose with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with individuals who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick. The CDC recommends that individuals remain home for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever or signs of a fever (i.e., chills, feeling warm, flushed appearance) without medication.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then immediately discard the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces