DERRY — A local family resource center is celebrating resilience in these trying times.
The Upper Room, a Family Resource Center on Tsienneto Road, is taking a stance, making plans and making sure families and the community continue on with resources, information and support.
That includes more use of technology to continue with classes and programs through a more virtual effort for getting information to the families and individuals that rely on the Upper Room for many areas of support, from teen parenting, to education activities, teen programs, caregivers support and other healthy living efforts.
"We are working Monday through Friday, we are not shutting down," Upper Room officials recently stated.
That means staff will be working to connect with those people who are part of the Upper Room family, through supportive phone calls and emails.
The Upper Room joins with other family resource centers around the state to make the changes necessary to help people get through what lies ahead.
"Our goal is to reduce the fears and isolation this situation may create," officials said. "For some families, this loss of control and access to outside support can be devastating to the health of children and the entire family. We have all jumped into motion to assure that families feel support, have connections and don't think they are alone in this."
Upper Room Executive Director Brenda Guggisberg added that the mindset is to navigate through this together while caring for our health and planning for the future.
"I want families to create their own hope, to make pretty signs and pictures on the front door, to send loving notes to people they love and to check in on those who may not be as fortunate as they are," Guggisberg said.
Guggisberg added that unlike having a series of "snow days," the current times may also allow people to slow down, and keep it simple. More family time, more time to share love and additional connections to be made in an otherwise busy world.
"Breakfasts together, school and work remotely, and then the connection again during meals," she said. "Play games, read, relax. Creating memories and opportunities during this time will teach our children and help us to not feel helpless. People can use their energy to make cards for veterans, to write letters to active duty soldiers, make cards for the elderly in a nursing home. "
More ways to cope could be getting children involved in cleaning, chores, trying on clothes that don't fit and donating clothing to local charities like the thrift shop at the Marion Gerrish Community Center in downtown Derry. Boosting local business and doing some early holiday shopping, buying gift cards.
"In November and December, you may be more grateful than you know for this," Guggisberg said.
The director also encouraged people to stay involved with fitness, and take advantage of online resources and programs.
The main goal is to remain kind to each other.
"Be kind, no one did this, not us, our bosses, our country," Guggisberg said. "It is easy to blame others for our own discomfort, but no one did this to us on purpose. It is an unfortunate situation that most in this lifetime have never endured and hopefully won't ever again."
The Upper Room offers open meetings for those in need to access:
Young Adults Strong, Facebook.com/Young-Adults-1101019272788999.
Teen Talk remote meeting access, Tuesdays, 3 to 4 pm at zoom.us/we/join/111147286?wpk=wepk742485aca235dd236ced4fbbf6330ec8.
Parent and Caregiver Cafe, Thursdays, 6 to 7:30 p.m., log in at us04web.zoom.us/we/join/302497889?wpk=wepk0a939bbb5f3e10795b40c54608f39b08.
Visit the Upper Room for additional resources, ideas and support at urteachers.org.