Dear Families, Guardians, and Friends-
 
          It's August already! We hope that you all have been able to enjoy our Alaskan summer with family and friends. We want to thank each of you for your unwavering support of The Arc and let you know that we are doing all we can to keep our individuals and staff safe. We want you all to know we are proceeding cautiously so that we can continue to provide in-person services and avoid further restrictions. We wanted to share some COVID-19 updates with you and let you know what actions we are taking. Unfortunately, Alaska has seen a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases in the past few weeks, the 3rd highest increase in hospitalizations in the nation. The Delta variant is considered twice as contagious as the original virus.
 
  • In the Municipality, our 14-day average is 31 new cases for every 100,000 people. The Muni and the State are at the highest alert level now.
  • As of August 4, there were 338 new cases reported in Anchorage, 101 requiring hospitalization.
  • The CDC and the Alaska DHSS still says that the most effective action you can take is to get vaccinated. Currently, the vaccination rate in Anchorage is 52.6%.
    1. Infections happen in only a small proportion of fully vaccinated people, even with the Delta variant. When these infections occur among vaccinated people, they tend to be mild.
    2. Vaccination offers additional benefits in reducing the risk of hospitalization and death related to the Delta variant. Research the benefits of vaccination at: http://www.dhss.alaska.gov/dph/Epi/id/Pages/COVID-19/sleevesup.aspx
    3. Thanks to Walgreens and our vaccine clinics, 100% of the individuals who live in our residential homes have been vaccinated.

What are we doing here at The Arc?

On the Main Campus:

  • Two weeks ago, we reinstated masks on our main campus.
  • All staff, individuals, and guests who visit the main building are screened and asked to wear masks.
  • We have free, weekly COVID testing available for staff and individuals.
  • We continue to review and follow all state and federal guidelines closely.
In our Residential Homes:
  • All shifted staff in the homes are required to wears masks.
  • Residents and LLSCs are not currently required to wear masks in the homes where they live or work.
  • We are requiring individuals and staff to wear masks when being transported in our vehicles.
  •  At this time, we have not made any changes to our policy on visitation, although please remember visitors are required to wear masks.
  • We are performing risk assessments on larger group activities and taking steps to limit exposure.
  • We continue to increase the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing in the homes, especially common areas.
At the Rec Center and Sparc:
  • We remain open for in-person services and classes; however, we are asking that along with staff, any individuals in Rec Center or Sparc classes wear face coverings.
  • We are requiring individuals and staff to wear face coverings when being transported in our vehicles.
  • We are monitoring class size and ensuring that we are allowing for social distancing.
  • Our Zoom classes are still available.
  • We continue to increase the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing in the Rec Center and classrooms, especially common areas.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding COVID-19 and the steps The Arc is
taking to keep you, your loved ones, and our staff safe, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us directly:

Barbara Rodriguez-Rath, CEO 777-0127 brath@thearcofanchorage.org

Tracy Faas, Dir., Comm. Living Services 777-0187 tfaas@thearcofanchorage.org

Caryn Brunello, Dir., Community Programs 777-0320 cbrunello@thearcofanchorage.org

We appreciate all of you! Be safe and be well.

Yours very truly,

Tracy Faas
Director of Community Programs
The Arc of Anchorage

Sparc

Sparc is an art studio and gallery that creates opportunities for artists who experience intellectual and developmental disabilities. The location and facilities provides a platform for them to engage in self-expression as part of the community. Not only do artists realize their creative potential through the space, but it also provides a retail gallery where the artists with I/DD can take part in selling their own work. Supporters of Sparc can attend events such as First Friday shows, purchase artwork, or sign up for an evening/weekend workshop open to the community.

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FEATURED ARTISTS

Please check out some of our artists and purchase some of their featured artwork!

Neil Hickock

Neil Hickok

Neil began his involvement with The Arc of Anchorage in 1971. It wasn’t until a friend suggested he take a class at Sparc: a creative place in 2002 that he tried his hand at creative arts. Upon first suggestion Neil declined but finally caved saying “okay, I’ll try one class to get you off my back!” He has been a dedicated maker ever since.

“If you think that you don’t have any talent, you should just give it a try. You might surprise yourself and find talent you never knew you had. Just give it a try, you never know.”

-Neil Hickok

Arrianne Glory-Member of Sparc Studio

Arrianne Glory

It’s always clear when Arrianne steps into the Sparc Studio. She brings a sparkle and energy that cannot be ignored. On any given day she may be working on a variety of different mediums including painting, costume design, mosaic arts, or photography. She is not only skilled in these creative pursuits but also has a gift for teaching others.

Andre Hogg-Artist at The Arc of Anchorage

Andre Hogg

“I have enjoyed making art all my life and have taken art classes at The Arc of Anchorage since 1994. My paintings and drawings are often done in series. In the past I have concentrated on painting stripes, cars and animals. I find inspiration in my daily interactions with people and enjoy looking at images in nature magazines. My favorite part of making art is the process and learning new techniques. Art has given me a way to express myself and just be in the moment, enjoying the process of creating.”

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