Cross
COVID-19 Reentry Kit Challenge

“I look upon all the world as my parish; thus far I mean, that in whatever part of it I am, I judge it meet, right, and my bounden duty to declare unto all that are willing to hear, the glad tidings of salvation.” – John Wesley, Journal, June 11, 1739

Due to increased exposure to the COVID-19 virus, our neighbors returning from prison are at a higher risk of spreading the coronavirus back into the community. At the same time, incarceration comprises the immune system and one’s overall health, putting COVID-negative returning neighbors at a higher risk of coronavirus affliction upon their return to community. The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (ODRC) has asked The West Ohio Conference for assistance in  providing hygiene items and face masks to our returning neighbors. 

All In Community, the WOC Disaster Response Ministry, and the West Ohio Conference United Methodist Women are challenging our members, churches, and groups to provide 4,000 returning neighbors with a health kit that will better protect the well-being of all community members by reducing the spread of COVID-19.

Individuals, churches, and groups may participate in the COVID-19 Reentry Hygiene Kit Challenge in the following ways:

  1. Serve as a district collection site. Collection sites are district-based locations where groups and individuals can drop off or mail their kits and masks. The Disaster Response Ministry representatives and/or ODRC will then pick up assembled kits and masks in mid-June. Each collection site sets its own time and dates for drop-offs. District collection sites are listed below and regularly updated. Contact Reba Collins at rebacko [at] gmail.com to register your church as a district collection site.
     
  2. Coordinate a supply collection. We currently have 324 kits from UMCOR that need 2-in-1 shampoo & conditioner, travel size hand sanitizer (if readily available), a washable face mask, and an encouraging note. Our conference has another 65 kits that need 2-in-1 shampoo & conditioner, toothpaste, travel size hand sanitizer (if readily available), a mask, and a note. These items are not included in the UMCOR kits, so we need to supplement locally. Contact Reba Collins at rebakco [at] gmail.com if you would like to contribute.
     
  3. Assemble hygiene kits. Kit assembly is a great way for families to serve together at home! Kits can be assembled by individuals as well. Whether it is 1 or 100, every kit counts in creating a safer community.  Kits can be assembled with or without masks. A downloadable Kit Assembly Checklist PDF is available below.
     
  4. Groups that assemble kits are required to adhere to social distancing guidelines for their own protection. A downloadable Group Assembly Guidelines PDF is available below. Groups may contact Jeff Walker at jwalker [at] alink.com to arrange for a district Disaster Response representative to pick up inventory of 25 kits or more.
     
  5. Contribute masks to go in kits. Not every kit will have a mask and not every mask will have a kit. Groups and individuals may provide washable face masks to be included in donated health kits. Homemade masks are acceptable as long as they are washable. We want to collect as many masks as possible. To learn how to make easy-to-sew masks, go to youtube.com and search for 'easy to sew face masks.'
     
  6. Provide direct financial support for purchase of additional kit materials. Our goal is 500 complete kits per district. Any financial contribution will go to purchase supplies to help meet our challenge goal of 4,000 kits. This inventory will provide enough kits for the next six months to protect everyone in need who is leaving an ODRC prison. Donations can be sent to the West Ohio Conference Council on Development. Please indicate in the memo line: COVID-19 Reentry Kit Challenge. Donations also may be made online HERE.

Kit Collection Process

The COVID-19 Reentry Kit Challenge will run between May 25 and June 22 with the following timeline:

May 25 – June 22: Groups/individuals assemble health kits/masks
June 22: Deadline to drop off kits and masks at district collection sites
June 24 - 26: Kits collected from sites by ODRC staff
June 29 – Dec. 2020: Kits distributed to returning neighbors

Individuals and groups will assemble kits according to the checklist PDF below.

  • Once assembled, kits may be dropped off at any of the collection sites at the times and days indicated on the COVID-19 Reentry Kit Challenge webpage. Or they may be mailed to a district collection site or the West Ohio Conference Center.
     
  • WOC Disaster Response Ministry representatives also will assist with kit collections of 25 kits or more. Contact Jeff Walker at jwalker [at] alink.com or 1-740-323-6750 to arrange for disaster response pick up. 

Contact an Organizing Team Member with your Questions:

Reba Collins
All In Community
rebakco [at] gmail.com
513-262-0184
Jeff Walker
WOC Disaster Response
jwalker [at] alink.com
740-323-6750
Paula Nourse
UMW
kinder6595 [at] hotmail.com
614-326-9062

Current District Collection Sites

  • Capitol Area North
    Maynard Avenue UMC
    2350 INDIANOLA AVE
    COLUMBUS, Ohio 43202
    1-614-263-5145
    Contact: Diana Kubovcik
    614-266-993
    Drop off by appointment

    Powell UMC
    825 E. Olentangy St. #1
    Powell, OH 43065
    Contact: Hanna Ewald
    614-847-3703
    Drop off: TBD

  • Capitol Area South
    Neal Avenue UMC – Newark
    12 NEAL AVE
    NEWARK, Ohio 43055
    1-740-344-3021
     
  • Foothills
    TBD
     
  • Maumee Watershed
    TBD
     
  • Miami Valley
    TBD
     
  • Northwest Plains
    St. Mark’s UMC – Lima
    1110 N Metcalf St.
    Lima, OH 45801
    Contact: Jessie Roark
    567-242-8695
    Drop off: M-TH; 8AM-Noon
     
  • Ohio River Valley
    Westwood UMC
    3460 Epworth Ave.
    Cincinnati, OH 45211
    Contact: Barb Vogt
    513-484-2221

  • Shawnee Valley
    McDermott UMC
    26 Hulet Street
    McDermott, Ohio 45652
    Contact: Rev. Francis Newman
    1-740-947-4081

    Hillsboro First UMC
    133 E. Walnut St.
    Hillsboro, OH 45133
    Contact: Avery Elliott
    937-393-2981
    Drop off: M-F, 8AM – Noon

    Shawnee Valley Distric Office
    573 E. Main St. 
    Chillicothe, OH 45601
    Contact: Diana Hall
    740-637-0829
    Drop Off: M-TH, 8AM – 4PM
    Call first.

Meeting the Challenge

Current Challenge

  • 4,000 Kits with Masks
     
  • 389 2-in-1 shampoo & conditioners
     
  • 389 Travel size hand sanitizers
     
  • 389 Washable face masks (To learn how to make easy-to-sew masks, go to youtube.com and search for ‘easy to sew face masks.’)
     
  • 389 Encouraging notes
     
  • 65 Toothpastes