UPDATED! SDM: A Program for Distributing Food and Learning Materials During Crises
As schools and districts began ramping up both meal and material distribution during the mass school shutdown, practices are emerging to facilitate the process safely and responsibly. The “I Love U Guys” Foundation released a beta version of the Standard Distribution Method (SDM-BETA) on March 17th, 2020 in response.
Since then the program has been used in several Colorado and Texas districts, serving thousands of families. The “I Love U Guys” Foundation have learned a lot from these real-world and real-time beta users, and have updated the SDM-BETA to SDM-BETA2.
The new Guidance contains details of the changes from BETA to BETA-2. Highlights include:
Change “Social Distancing” to “Physical Distancing”
The term Social Distancing entered our collective vocabulary this year.” The “I Love U Guys” preference is “Physical Distancing” which retains social engagement while safely keeping physically apart. This aligns with the CDC’s recommendations.
Team Member Selection
Deliberation and policy development considering various at-risk factors might minimize an individual’s participation in some, or all, activities associated with distribution.
Emphasis on Screening
SDM-BETA2 includes guidance for screening practices for all workers at all points of distribution. It’s valable to implement these practices now since similar practices with staff and students when schools reopen may be necessary.
Food Preparation Shifts
SDM-BETA2 establishes separate food preparation shifts to retain the same members per shift and strict disinfection between shifts. This prevents cross-shift contamination, allowing the overall program to continue in the event of infection.
Non-medical personnel have adopted the practice of wearing masks, and it may be beneficial to begin to use medical grade masks with proper mask usage protocols as supplies become less scarce.
Incident Command System
Early SDM usage indicates that organizations with Incident Command practices are managing the crisis with greater ease.