‘Telephone Tree’ Program Helps Clients Stay Socially Connected while Staying Home

New Dawn Meals on Wheels clients remain socially connected while practicing physical isolation thanks to the help of community volunteers.

To protect our clients, staff, and volunteers we have put in place several new safety procedures as we continue to provide our essential community service. These safety measures include contactless delivery which means our clients and volunteers no longer have their usual face-to-face interaction.

For some of our clients, interacting with New Dawn Meals on Wheels volunteers was their only form of socialization in the run of a day. A lot of them experienced isolation, even before we all started practicing physical distancing.

The newly formed “Telephone Tree” is a phone check-in program designed to maintain contact with our Meals on Wheels clients and ensure their wellness during this time of uncertainty. Clients receive a phone call from the same volunteer each week to help build and maintain a relationship over time.

“Currently, all 85 of our clients are participating in the Telephone Tree,” says Sarah Mackinnon, Administrative Assistant, New Dawn Enterprises. “The program is operated by a group of volunteers who have stepped aside from meal delivery during the pandemic.”

“Some of the clients just require a quick check-in, while others are more inclined to chat,” says MacKinnon. “Once volunteers finish their calls for the week, they email us a report on how each client is doing and any questions or concerns clients have. It’s a great tool for us to help our clients in whatever capacity we can — in keeping those lines of communication open.”

So far, there has been positive feedback from both clients and volunteers about the Telephone Tree Program. Not only is the program beneficial to New Dawn Meals on Wheels clients, but it also allows volunteers to stay connected to those outside their household while practicing physical distancing.

More Information

Sarah MacKinnon
Program Coordinator, New Dawn Meals on Wheels
902-539-9560 ext.251
[email protected]

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