Community response and reaction to COVID-19 has been evolving rapidly on a day-to-day basis. To protect the health of families served by Kentucky Refugee Ministries, staff and community members, and to adhere to recommendations of elected and public health officials, KRM will take the steps below. This is an initial, provisional response that may be updated in some substantial respects.
UPDATE: All of KRM’s classroom educational programs will remain closed until further notice. These classes have moved to virtual options.
ESL. KRM Louisville and Lexington will suspend their adult daily adult ESL classes for a three-week period, from Monday, March 16 through Friday, April 3. This period is concurrent with the closure of Jefferson County Public Schools and Fayette County Public Schools from March 16 through 27, and both school systems’ Spring break, previously scheduled for the week of March 30 to April 3. The two-week closure prior to Spring Break was requested by Governor Beshear to prevent community spread of the coronavirus.
Citizenship. KRM Louisville and Lexington citizenship classes will be temporarily suspended this same three-week period, March 16 to April 4.
Louisville Specialized Programs.
- Family Center: Closed for three weeks, starting Monday, the same dates as KRM ESL, March 16 to April 3.
- Drivers Education: Classes suspended at KRM and Catholic Charities from March 16 to April 3.
- Elder Refugee Program: The KRM Louisville Elder Refugee Program, which serves elders resettled through both KRM and Catholic Charities Migration and Refuge Services, will be temporarily closed from Tuesday, March 17 through Thursday, April 9.
Refugee Arrivals, open office
KRM has 15 cases of refugee families schedule to arrive by April 29. In all other respects, KRM’s Louisville and Lexington offices will remain open and operational to provide essential services to families. During this hardship, it is important for KRM’s offices to remain open to meet clients’ essential and emergency needs.
UPDATE: Upon entry into the building, all clients are being offered masks, hand sanitizer, and multilingual resources on COVID-19. In-person services are limited to critical needs, such as medical case management and initial meetings.
Volunteer Contact and Community Outreach
Both offices will have to monitor and likely limit volunteer and co-sponsorship contact with staff and clients. If you are a volunteer or co-sponsor, please read this enclosed letter from KRM Executive Director John Koehlinger and Lexington Director Mary Cobb. We will review scheduled agency outreach events that may draw large crowds in confined spaces. Several have already been cancelled.
KRM continues to educate refugee and immigrant families about COVID-19. The following resources are available to the public.
Stop the Spread of Germs – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Coronavirus Fact Sheet – Washington State Department of Health
Keep Illness From Spreading – Vermont Department of Health
We share this message with the wider Kentucky community to keep you informed. These steps are taken to protect the health of the public, of the staff, and of the vulnerable families KRM serves. Thank you for your understanding, your partnership, and your support.