Lighthouse Mission Ministries’ homeless service center in Bellingham, Base Camp, has had an outbreak of COVID-19’s Delta Variant. In the last two days, since Friday August 13, 14 Base Camp guests have been tested and identified as positive cases for COVID-19. All guests testing positive and some of their close contacts have been transferred to the Isolation and Quarantine Facility (IQF) in Bellingham. Of the 14 guests testing positive for COVID-19, one guest had been fully vaccinated and is experiencing mild symptoms.
Lighthouse Mission Ministries is following all recommended precautions to keep their guests and staff safe and healthy. They have worked closely with the Whatcom County Health Department to develop their COVID-19 protocols which include: rapid testing of all guests on a daily basis, encouraging social distancing and requiring mask wearing among staff and guests, symptom checks for all staff members, and a thorough daily cleaning regime. In addition to these precautions, Base Camp is temporarily halting volunteer support and limiting guest access to its dayroom and courtyard to overnight guests only. These precautionary measures will ensure a documented continuum of testing and care for staff and guests.
Hans Erchinger Davis, Lighthouse Mission’s Executive Director said, “The team at Base Camp is working with competence and heart, in cooperation with the Whatcom County Health Department, to take the steps necessary in keeping everyone safe from this variant. We will monitor the situation until it’s stamped out.”
Erchinger-Davis said, “Serving half the homeless population of Whatcom county year round we don’t have the option to shut down services. Whether the recent heat or the Delta variant, we are indebted to a generous community helping keep our doors open and our teams on the front lines keeping people safe and transforming lives.”
Lighthouse Mission Ministries has been helping people who are homeless since 1923. It cares for up to 310 people each day and provides a continuum of services aimed at ending homelessness through street outreach, enhanced shelters, addiction recovery, Christian programs, and aftercare. To make a donation or learn more about its services, call (360) 733-5120, or visit www.thelighthousemission.org.