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Lakeside Celebrates the Fall Season with Safe Candy Distribution

The fall season has quickly come upon us this year and what usually is a time for excitement and preparing for the holidays, is made a little less exciting due to COVID-19. Typically, residents from Lakeside Apartments in San Leandro are eagerly preparing sweets for masked visitors and costumed guests at the end of October, but with strict social distancing requirements still in place, this year's celebration looked a little different.

Haydee Pelayo Nuño, Lakeside Apartment's PSCDC Resident Services Coordinator, has been working to bring back some of the fall magic to her residents. With strict social distancing in place for the safety of her and Lakeside residents, she has been working with residents through emails and phone calls. As a way to bring some joy and excitement through her community, she began planning for the distribution.

"I have been a part of this community for eight years and part of this team for over four years," says Haydee. "Every year this community has come together to celebrate the holidays and annual events. Being able to continue with our traditions in this community is very dear to me. Seeing the happy faces and smiles, is what I love about my job."

The candy, some of which were donated by the families, was distributed after following proper COVID precautions. Masks were mandatory while gloves and hand sanitizers were provided during the distribution. Children were also practicing social distancing by keeping six feet apart while they waited their turn in line and keeping their masks on. With the cooperation of the young residents in attendance, the distribution was safe and successful! Two young residents, Kayla and Mauricio, also volunteered and helped Haydee run the distribution smoothly! 30 young residents attended the distribution to satisfy their sweet tooth and show off their awesome costumes.

Haydee truly missed interacting with her residents in person after many months of limiting contact with them. Most importantly, she is thankful that she was able to continue a long-standing tradition within Lakeside's community despite almost a year of self-quarantine.

"The Lakeside spirit was amazing; I was happy to see the many smiles as the young residents stopped by for some candy in their Halloween costumes. I was touched by how grateful and appreciative parents felt towards our program because we continued our annual traditions for the community during difficult times. One parent said it is important to come together during these times."

Haydee is a currently planning how to celebrate the upcoming holiday season at Lakeside in a safe yet enjoyable manner. She plans on bringing the community together, while being physically apart.

"The goal for Thanksgiving is to create Friendsgiving goodie bags for the young residents. Due to COVID, we won't be able to share meals. Another idea I had was to have the young residents pick out some food magazines from me and share their favorite dish in a collage with gratitude message."

Despite the boundaries and challenges that COVID has brought up in terms of servicing our residents, residents of Lakeside Apartments in San Leandro are able to continue their sense of community and traditions thanks to their Resident Services Coordinator, Haydee Pelayo Nuño.


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