All Together Los Alamos, a citizen group organized to help Los Alamos residents who are housebound, is off to a great start, with more than 50 volunteers ready to help set up computers for video-chatting, doing deliveries of pre-paid groceries, or just a friendly phone call.
Volunteers range from college students who are home early to 70-somethings.
David Izraelevitz, one of the group organizers and Los Alamos County Councilor, said he is delighted with the response.
“In a matter of a week, we’ve assembled several teams of volunteers, with a variety of skills and time availability within each team so we can handle any surge in need. Our requests for assistance have started off slowly, and in several cases, we have been able to point those in need to existing services, such as the wonderful resources available through our senior center, which provides many of the services that we can provide, as well as many others,” Izraelevitz said. “In other cases, we have worked with the faith community. Even in cases where our volunteer corps is not necessary, being able to call and let them know about other services in the community has been of value and gratefully acknowledged. The community is asked to encourage those in need to go to our website at alltogetherlosalamos.org to learn more about this service and to register for assistance.”
Self Help Executive Director Maura Taylor is one of the partners of All Together Los Alamos.
“This volunteer group has been a great source of additional capacity for us, such as those willing to make some simple shopping as well as delivery of groceries,” she said.
Although volunteers in the All Together Los Alamos group will not handle monetary transactions and are prohibited from visiting homes or other physical proximity, in order to comply with social distancing requirements, Self Help is able to handle and monitor such assistance through existing expertise, and will provide continued assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the purchase of grocery items. Self Help also will be the monitor organization to assure that funds are distributed equitably within the community.
Donations to the assistance effort can be made to Self Help, Inc., either via checks mailed to Self Help at 2390 North Road, Los Alamos, NM 87544, or online at selfhelpla.org/donate. Gifts to Self Help, which the donor has designated for All Together Los Alamos will prioritize pandemic relief in Los Alamos County; this designation can be noted via check memo line, attached note, or email.