Rapid Response Stories

Community Health & Wellness Center

Joann Orsatti, NP-C, teleconsulting with a patient, thanks to the tech equipment purchased with funds from Foundation for Community Health! Photo: CHWC


Thanks to the generous donation of funds from the Foundation for Community Health, our trained nursing staff  has been able to assist our community with Fit Testing to ensure staff in one area nursing home were protected as they care for some of the most high-risk residents. In addition, funding from the Foundation for Community Health has helped us to secure additional telemedicine equipment including laptops and phones so that we can remain connected with our patients, continue to meet their healthcare needs and keep our staff safe.

At Community Health and Wellness Center (CHWC), we believe an important part of what we do is to seek ways to engage with the community and offer support.  For instance, we initiated “To Your Good Health,” a free monthly lecture series at the Torrington Library, featuring different providers who talk about various aspects of health and wellness.  Our nutritionist teaches a monthly “Watch, Taste and Learn” class at the Sullivan Senior Center and the Winsted Senior Center, where she prepares a healthy dish for the seniors, serves them the food, and hands out the recipes.  We also participated in Produce Rx, a 16 week regional initiative which delivered fresh produce to those with food insecurities who often cannot afford healthy fresh produce. These are just a few examples of our outreach efforts.

CHWC Nurse Fitting Mask

CHWC nursing staff assisting with Fit Testing to ensure a nursing home’s staff were protected. Photo: Republican-American by Bruno Matarazzo Jr.

CHWC Nurse Sorting Masks

CHWC nursing staff assisting with Fit Testing to ensure a nursing home’s staff were protected. Photo: Republican-American by Bruno Matarazzo Jr.

Under these new, difficult circumstances we have taken other steps to serve the community.

Food insecurities are prevalent in the community we serve.  On Wednesday, May 13th, we held a “Driving Away Hunger” event at our Torrington facility’s parking lot where we were able to purchase over $2,000 worth of nonperishable food items and necessities and fill 150 bags with the provisions, donating 50 of them to patients in the Ryan White Program.  The other 100 were distributed to the first 100 people who drove or walked to our facility.  Initially scheduled to run from 3 pm – 5 pm, the bags were claimed within 15 minutes, showing there is a pressing need. 

Driving Away Hunger

CHWC staff members gave 100 bags filled with nonperishable food items and essentials in their parking lot to the first 100 cars, plus donated 50 additional bags to patients in the Ryan White Program. Photo: CHWC

Driving Away Hunger

Joanne Borduas, CHWC CEO, with nonperishables purchased and distributed by the Center to the community in their “Driving Away Hunger” initiative. Photo: CHWC

CHWC also donated $500 to the Friends in Service to Humanity/FISH homeless shelter, along with some nonperishable food items, and another $500 to New Beginnings, a gathering place for people in need of housing as well as a safe place where they can take advantage of different services that aim to help them get employed and housed.  Joanne Borduas presented the check to FISH executive director, Deirdre Houlihan DiCara, and two staff members.

FISH Homeless Shelter Donation

Joanne Borduas, CHWC CEO, presenting $500 check to Deirdre Houlihan DiCara, ED of Friends in Service to Humanity (FISH), and staff members. Photo: CHWC

CHWC conducted a day of COVID-19 testing on May 21 in partnership with the Department of Public Health and the National Guard.  The testing was offered to first responders and CHWC patients, as well as to  members of the community, at no charge.

For more information on the Community Health & Wellness Center, visit our website at http://www.chwctorr.org/