NORFOLK, Va. —
COVID-19 may affect people in different ways. A local organization is helping people with disabilities adjust during the pandemic.
Paul Atkinson is President and CEO of Eggleston Services, a nonprofit that provides education, training, and employment for people with disabilities. “Each individual is unique-- different likes, different challenges,” says Atkinson. “And that's one of the reasons we created a variety of different programs and services for people.”
Amid the coronavirus, Eggleston Services continues to support its members while following social distancing guidelines. “We have to have increased staff [be]cause people are kind of sheltering within the home,” says Atkinson. “So, it really requires additional support because people aren't able to necessarily leave during the day to attend day programs.”
To ensure everyone’s health and safety, the group has temporarily shut down many of its locations and programs. But some services are still up and running— including laundry services, residential programs, its Garden Center, and a modified schedule at its Automotive Center. “The state has encouraged us to continue to operate those programs for those individuals that need that relief,” says Atkinson. “We want people to stay home if they can, but for those that can't or need that structured program, we'll continue to operate that.“
During this time of uncertainty, Atkinson says Eggleston Services has seen a substantial increase In requests for help. With your financial support, you can help the nonprofit continue to impact the lives of people with disabilities across Hampton Roads. “We're really owned by the community, and we're supported by the community,” says Atkinson. “And in some of those cases, what we're really trying to do is continue to provide services to individuals.”
While the crisis may have significantly affected the routines of people with disabilities, Eggleston Services remains committed to supporting their independence and well-being. “That has been the mission from the beginning,” says Atkinson. “We maybe interpret it a little differently as society changes and as needs change, but we're gonna be here to provide those services.“
More than 200 other local nonprofits need your support as part of the Give Local 757 initiative to spark local philanthropy. By donating, you’ll help them continue to help the community recover from this crisis. Please go to https://www.givelocal757.org/.