As the COVID-19 outbreak at a Tillsonburg long term care facility shows no signs of slowing down, the community is stepping in with support.
"The staff have really appreciated everything," said Maple Manor administrative assistant, Amber Granger.
She was on hand Tuesday to accept the latest donations for staff from the community.
"They have meals almost every day for the rest of the month. And then I have a bunch of gift cards to give out."
The grassroots campaign includes donations of cash, gift cards, and food from community members and local businesses.
Co-organizer Cathy Ryan said residents are also receiving cards and gifts. "They’re residents of our community, and they need to know, and the staff really needs to know that the community is beside them. They’re not alone in there and we’ll do what we can to help them get through this."
Eighty residents and 48 staff at Maple Manor have tested positive for COVID-19. Eleven residents have died. Some staff are holed up in a local hotel away from their families while they quarantine, including the sister of area resident Corry Davis, who started the campaign.
"For her being isolated and away from her family and you know having someone there at night to talk to. You know, having her family around her. Having hot meals at night. That’s been a huge impact on her as well and not having her family there as well."
The outbreak at Maple Manor was declared on December 12th.
One former staff member tells CTV News she raised concerns about conditions at the home last year, earlier in the pandemic. Barb Black, a personal support worker of 27 years, said she now believes it’s time to send the military into the home for support.
"It’s gotten so bad they need to bring in the military. They need to bring in the military because they can control everything. They can make sure that things are properly... the procedures are properly done."
Southwestern Public Health reported 64 new COVID-19 cases in Elgin and Oxford counties Tuesday, with 365 confirmed ongoing cases.