News & Events

An Update From Our Executive Director

April 2020

Dear Harbor Regional Center Community,

Our world has changed dramatically over the past six weeks, but through it all we have developed new and creative ways to maintain frequent communication with HRC clients/families and service providers and to provide essential services and supports. While we remain “safer at home” we have found we are still strong and we are resilient. So today I am taking this opportunity to share with you not only an update on the status of our HRC services, but also some stories of the resourceful, heartwarming and generous deeds of those individuals and organizations in our greater HRC community.

  • HRC Service Coordinators have reached out and are continuing to connect with virtually all of our 15,000+ clients and their families to let you know we remain here for you, and to understand how you are managing in these new circumstances and how we can be of assistance. We have found new ways to serve you by phone, email, mail, and even “face to face” using Zoom, FaceTime, and Skype. We want you to know we are here for you.
  • Even though our non-residential service providers have been challenged to find new ways to engage with you they have stepped up to the task and are actively involved with you or your family member - some within a matter of days and virtually all within the first two weeks of the “safer at home” order. Our child developmental specialists, speech and language pathologists, behaviorists, and so many more of our clinical specialists in addition to our day service providers are using the internet to ensure that needed skill development activities are still available to you.
  • Our service provider relations and health services teams are distributing masks and other personal protective equipment, and providing technical support for our direct care service providers who are working diligently to ensure the health and safety of our clients. Thankfully we have not experienced any ‘outbreaks’ in our community, but we are monitoring 11 individuals who have tested positive and are self-isolating in different home settings. Sadly, two of our clients who had underlying health conditions have passed away. We have learned that statewide, as of April 22nd, 105 individuals served by the 21 regional centers were reported to have tested positive.
  • As we have prepared for the worst (and have hoped for the best) HRC has been building housing capacity, to provide temporary care if needed, for clients who have been exposed or tested positive for COVID-19, or who may otherwise need a quarantine site for their safety. So today we want to recognize and thank our many HRC service providers, the Doubletree Hotel in Torrance as well as the Courtyard by Marriott in Long Beach, who together have helped us to set aside up to 331 rooms for this purpose.
  • HRC has posted on our website a long list of resources here: http://www.harborrc.org/resources/corona. You can find everything you might need from food banks to how to get help with your utilities or your rent; from financial assistance to how to access low or no cost media resources; from information about COVID-19 for children or people with developmental disabilities to at-home activities and educational resources for families. Nearly every day, new information is provided via our e-news bulletin. You can refer back to these electronic newsletters at http://www.harborrc.org/news.
  • Follow us on Facebook for daily resource updates.
  • HRC has been privileged to know some of the kindest and most generous people and organizations over the course of our nearly half century of service to those with developmental disabilities and their families. So we have not been surprised, but we are always grateful, when they consistently come forward to offer help in times of crisis. These friends of HRC have contributed thousands of dollars in just the past few weeks, providing us with the resources necessary to purchase grocery store gift cards for our neediest families. You can help us to support more families experiencing unemployment and food insecurity due to the COVID-19 crisis with an online donation to the Harbor Help Fund at http://www.harborrc.org/get-involved/support.

We know we have not yet arrived at the end of this health crisis, but we are nonetheless optimistic about the future. We have seen the progress that is being made in our state to test more and more of us, to treat those who have been hospitalized, to distribute personal protective equipment and other supplies to first responders and care givers, to build capacity to shelter those in need and to provide food for those who have lost their jobs. And we are grateful to participate, even in a small way, to assist those with developmental disabilities in the communities we serve. We look forward to returning our services to a “new normal” as soon as possible. Until then, please stay safe and healthy.Sincerely,

Patricia Del Monico
Executive Director