From March to June, Treasure House closed its doors to keep residents safe. During this time, we were not able to accept new residents; guests and family members could not schedule visits; all but four residents lost employment; and our annual fundraiser, Celebrity Game Night, was postponed. Our typical operations were completely turned on their head, to say the least, and we had to pivot every aspect of our daily functioning.
Even in the very uncertain times, we found light. We were grateful to receive a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan from the Small Business Association’s first round. Our staff remained employed and continued empowering residents to gain independence, purpose, and inclusion. Our souls flourished with each other’s company and unbreakable bonds were formed. As a family, we played games, danced, practiced new skincare regimes, cooked (with groceries that we learned to order online!), and continued learning valuable life skills. We laughed. We caught our breath. Leadership had new found time to plan for 2021, and life coaches had ample time to research new employment and volunteer opportunities. Staff supported one another and our residents through the mental and emotional challenges that people around the world endured, and ultimately grew as we prepared to emerge unified.
By December 31st, we had zero resident cases to report, and continued to exercise precautions. Treasure House began the year with 22 residents and was home to 25 by December. To further speak to our growth, we did not qualify for the second round of PPP, which meant Treasure House needed its community partners more than ever. We were welcomed with open arms and hearts. Foundations, companies and individuals raised more than $200,000 to provide individuals in the disability community with the same opportunity as all others to lead fulfilling lives. Treasure House received in-kind contributions totaling more than $175,000. We were even able to come out ahead for the few events that we were able to host during the fiscal year.
If there’s a 2020 lesson in the lives of our 25 residents and our team that supports them, it’s that ‘Underdogs’ can achieve more than they think, especially in particularly undesirable circumstances. This notion fuels our hope and reaffirms that our future accomplishments are limitless.