Cedars Communications About COVID-19

If you are not currently receiving these detailed updates from Cedars Executive Director Chuck Greene and would like to,please email KatieL@cedarslife.org



March 27, 2020 Email Update

I think a hero is an ordinary individual who finds strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.
Christopher Reeve

Dear Cedars families,

These days each of us is facing significant obstacles in maintaining safe and healthy lives. But at Cedars those obstacles become unusually complex and can feel overwhelming at times.

Fortunately, Cedars has assembled a staff that is clear on its mission, diligent in their efforts, and completely dedicated to the health and well-being of our residents. We are planning, we are thoughtful but most importantly, perhaps, is we are showing up.  In particular, those caring directly for our residents--day in and day out—have not wavered. They are present and continue to make lives creative, productive and joyous for Cedars participants...they are our heroes!


Suffice it to say, we are aggressively and proactively considering the huge myriad of alternative scenarios that could occur amid the crisis and developing specific protocols for each. All that amidst an external environment that changes almost hourly. We are in constant contact with the various informed resources (the CDC, Marin Health and Human Services, etc.) who are providing advice and new regulations, and drawing on the experiences of our staff.

We will continue to communicate new updates, especially as they might affect you and your ability to be with family members.  But for now and the foreseeable future, we do want to reiterate that day programs are closed and residents are 'sheltering in place' in their respective homes (with plenty of activities and virtual contact with day program staff).  No visitors (including family members) are allowed in the residences and if a resident leaves their home for visits they may not return for at least two weeks or, more likely, until the “Shelter in Place” order is lifted by the Governor.  Currently there are no cases or symptoms of COVID-19 among Cedars residents or staff.

Certainly if you have specific questions or concerns you may contact me (415) 235-8206, Cheryl White (415)378-3258, Rob Robinson (415)717-9032, Stacy Anderson (615)604-2526 or Kaeb Menker (510)290-0222.


Be well and stay safe,

Chuck Greene
Executive Director

March 22, 2020 Email Update


Dear Family members and friends,

First we hope you are well and able to maintain a positive outlook and good spirit these days.

As you know, Cedars always has our residents' best interest at heart. But this becomes especially important as they and our staff do everything within their control to mitigate exposure to the COVID-19 virus. Certainly virtually every authority on the virus says that the intent of the 'Shelter in Place' order  primarily translates to limiting your exposure to other individuals to reduce the spread of the virus.

With that unfortunate realization, moving forward Cedars will not allow any visitors to its residences--including family and friends. While extremely disappointing, we believe doing so is the strongest measure we can take to support the health of your family members.

Additionally, if a resident goes to visit family or friends, they will not be allowed to return for at least a two week period or possibly even until the Governor rescinds his "Shelter in Place" order (which could be a long time). Clearly as we learn more from the right authorities we will be more explicit about the conditions under which a resident may return to Cedars. 

If a resident is currently away from Cedars we will have to determine the specific conditions under which they may return (i.e. not having been around anyone with symptoms for the past two weeks, etc.). While we care about every single resident at Cedars and their very important network of families and friends, we cannot jeopardize the health of others by not being diligent in this effort.

We are trying to arrange "virtual visits" between residents and families, and will keep you posted on our progress.

Please know that Cedars has had a fair amount of experience with situations requiring a quarantine to fight the spread of illness, so we are relatively informed and practiced at keeping our residents safe.  Our fantastic residential staff are a uniquely skilled and dedicated group of people, taking every effort to support each person through this uncertain time.

For more information or to answer any of your questions, please call Rob Robinson, Director of Residential Services at 415-717-9032.


Chuck Greene
Executive Director



March 20, 2020 Email Update

"Here is the answer which I will give to President Roosevelt...We shall not fail or falter; we shall not weaken or tire. Neither the sudden shock of battle nor the long-drawn trials of vigilance and exertion will wear us down. Give us the tools and we will finish the job."  
Sir Winston Churchill (1874 - 1965), Radio speech, 1941

Dear Cedars families,

In many ways the above quotation characterizes Cedars promise to our constituents with our response to COVID-19!

Clearly, we are concerned about our near future, as are all of you.  But we are also working hard together--being thoughtful, proactive, and diligent--not just to keep everyone healthy but to ensure that our residents continue to lead creative, productive, joyous lives.

Some important updates in just the last week:

Most importantly, there are no residents who have any COVID-19 symptoms.  While that is wonderful, our COVID-19 response team continues to meet regularly and we are preparing for virtually every scenario. In particular:

  • Health Services (HS) has been making sure residents' medication supplies are not interrupted. 

  • Residents who need to see a physician have been connecting with their respective providers in person or via telephone via HS.

  • HS continues to collaborate with local health agencies and sheriff offices to make sure we have the most up to date information. HS will be attending the biweekly city-wide conference call hosted by Marin Public Health Agency and Marin Health and Human Services for additional and relevant new information.

  • HS is keeping up with house needs, such as masks and sanitizers. Local agencies have been helpful in providing these items on a limited basis.

  • HS continues to offer staff training on the current Cedars protocol and provides information to questions staff may have.

  • HS has been checking with residents to make sure they are healthy and supported. We've been providing fun activity-based tools for staff to engage residents.

  • As of today (Friday) we will be sending out a newsletter to house staff that has information on simple stress management tools for our residents and health-oriented physical and mental activities, etc, that are simple to implement.   

  • We are working on starting a new support program called "Healthy Staycation," which mainly focuses on oral hygiene.  

Programmatically, we are being as creative as possible:

  • We are setting up a group on our existing Facebook page, Cedars Life to create a safe virtual space to come together where our participants and art facilitators can share their art, learn from each other and support their colleagues. (For more information on how to join Cedars FB page reach out to Mary Sullivan at marys@cedarslife.org or Yasmin Boroumand at yasmin@cedarslife.org)

  • Day Program staff have initiated a regular call to their attendees to check in, provide additional ideas and support, and help ensure they are doing well. This includes not only Cedars residents but also participants who live in the community or are connected with other agencies.

  • We are planning virtual jewelry classes with kits assembled by instructors and delivered by volunteers. Artists are also being provided with materials for a future show, "sheltered at home". 

Cedars is considered an essential sector of business, and we have been following all the rules and regulations that allow us to continue to work through the shelter in place. Our dedicated residential staff are continuing to work each day and many day program staff are also working in our residences. We are still hiring and have modified the process to accommodate the situation and keep everyone’s safety as our utmost priority. The administrative team is still working full speed, though dealing with the logistics of doing so from home.  

Again, please know how much we appreciate your concern and support--it helps tremendously.

If you have questions related to residential services please contact Rob (415-717-9032), for health-related updates contact Kaeb (510-290-0222), or for any overall comments or concerns contact me. 

Stay healthy--we will keep you up to date on this particularly strange adventure.



Chuck Greene
Executive Director
Cedars of Marin

March 17, 2020 Email Update

 In this changing climate, the following are our most recent actions to support COVID-19 prevention efforts:

  • We will be suspending all Cedars day programs from at least Tuesday, March 17th - April 7th. Last week, Cedars family members and day program participants were notified that Cedars day programs will be closed, and we will be keeping all Cedars residents at home.

  • Artist Within – A Cedars Gallery will be closed until further notice.

  • “Our Earth, Our Home” Opening Reception will not take place on April 4th. We are exploring other ways to share this exhibition at a later date. 

The situation is constantly changing, and we will continue to be in touch as appropriate. But rest assured that Cedars is prepared to respond to whatever comes our way. It is because of your dedicated and unwavering support that we are able to face these challenges with confidence. We are so grateful for your help as we come together in our shared mission of inspiring creative, productive, joyous, and healthy lives for everyone at Cedars.

March 13, 2020 Email Update


Dear Cedars families,

We hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy during this unsettling time. In an effort to keep you abreast of what we are doing at Cedars, I'm sending you an update on the steps we are taking to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 infection.

First and foremost, you should know that there are no confirmed cases of the virus among Cedars staff, day program participants or residents. However, we have decided that it clearly would be in the best interest of everyone to be safe and suspend all Cedars day programs for at least the next two weeks—from Tuesday, March 17th – 31st. Additionally, we will be keeping Cedars residents home who normally would go to other day programs.

Cedars protocol (attached) is in full effect, and staff are following the procedures as outlined.

  • Staff have and will continue to receive training around the steps to prevent illness as well as how to execute fully the current protocol.

  • Our Health and Wellness department has been attending several meetings at Marin Health and Human Services (MHHS) to make sure we have the most up to date information on COVID-19 in our community.

  • Due to the risk and the recommendation made by The Marin Public Health agency, Cedars Health and Wellness department has suspended all routine medical appointments until further notice. That said, we will be taking residents to doctor's offices if s/he needs immediate care.

  • Hand washing and disinfecting common areas are being done aggressively both at day programs and homes.

  • As mentioned, none of our residents show any flu-like symptoms. That said, we will continue to monitor each resident every day to make sure any sign of infection is contained immediately.

  • All of our homes and day programs have received needed items such as masks, disinfecting supplies, etc. and will promptly supply as required items are running low.

The health and safety of our residents and staff are very important to us all. A cross-organizational team now meets every Wednesday morning to evaluate any new developments and stands ready to act on a moment’s notice. We also plan to send out a weekly update to all of you by the end of every Friday. We will continue to collaborate with local health agencies, the Sherriff’s office, health providers, and you to make sure we are well prepared for any incident that would come our way.

Cedars Outbreak Response Protocol

Stay safe and carry-on,


Chuck Greene

Executive Director

Cedars of Marin


March 6, 2020 Email Update


Dear Cedars Participants, Cedars Day Program Families and Partner Support Agencies,

In light of the news about the Coronavirus, we wanted to share the following information and suggestions with you:

1. Cedars administration has been in touch with the local health department to ensure that we are receiving accurate and current information and to base internal plans and protocols on expert advice. Based on this, Cedars staff have received up to date information about the disease and will continue to receive information as it is updated.

2. There are no active cases of the virus at Cedars at this time.

3. All Cedars staff are trained in Universal Precautions which includes methodologies for keeping oneself and others safe from the transmission of disease.

4. All Cedars staff and participants are being reminded, in particular, about proper handwashing methods. Here is some good information about hand-washing that we recommend you adopt as well: https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html

5. If you have traveled in areas that have been deemed restricted by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) because of an outbreak of this virus, we asked that you follow the CDC protocol and self-isolate, staying home for 2 weeks and return to program with written clearance by the proper medical provider.

To prevent the potential spread of all flu like illness, we ask that you check each morning and stay home if you have any of the following symptoms:

     · Coughing
     · Fever or
     · Shortness of breath

If you arrive with or develop these symptoms at the day program, we will ask you to go home immediately so you can fully recover and so others can stay healthy. Please do not return to day program until you have been free of symptoms for at least 48 hours without the use of medications that alleviate symptoms.

Cedars has developed this working internal protocol, which reflects our current knowledge, access to resources and present circumstances.

We want everyone to stay healthy and appreciate your cooperation in helping that to be the case. We will be in touch with more information as things progress. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact your program manager or Cedars Associate Executive Director:

Textile Arts Collaborative – Lauren Sockler or Denise Colwell (415) 453-4240
Fine Art Studios – Yasmin Boroumand (415) 259-9941
Community Connections – Natasha Annenkova (415) 258-2859
Residential Services – Rob Robinson (415) 717-9031
Associate Executive Director – Cheryl White (415) 526-1358

Thank you,

Chuck Greene
Cedars Executive Director

Since 1919, Cedars has been inspiring individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to lead creative, productive, and joyous lives.

Cheryl White

Associate Executive Director

Tel: (415) 526-1352

email: cheryl@cedarslife.org

(415) 454-5310



PO Box 947

Ross, CA  94957

Jeanne Lipson

Director of Development

Tel: (415) 526-1354

email: jeanne@cedarslife.org

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