A Message from Elks State Secretary, Carl Seibert:

Greetings Elks of Florida:

I do hope this message finds each of you safe and healthy!

As we “weather the storm”, I wanted to keep you updated on a few things as they relate to our state events & activities.

Therapy Services
Florida Elks Children’s Therapy Services (FECTS) has suspended all in-home, face-to-face, therapy visits. However, our therapists are still treating patients through the activities the parents have already been shown from prior visits, through real-time “Facetime” type interactions with our patients & parents, and through new exercises/activities being e-mailed to them! Although these interactions are being documented through therapy notes in each patients records, most patients, if not all, will have their in-person therapy sessions extended once this crisis has passed and each will receive their guaranteed 26 weeks of therapy from our program! Our Therapy program has always been operated from afar and Colleen has not missed a beat in keeping tabs. The therapists are also using any downtime to catch-up on patient medical records and they are completing online courses to meet their continuing education unit (CEU) requirements. Our therapists are amazing and oh the stories we will hear after this has passed, of their clever responses to the needs of our patients and patient families!

Youth Camp
Florida Elks Youth Camp (FEYC) has suspended all camping activities and most camp operations. Resident staff is being utilized to maintain the security of the camp facilities and property, and minimal other staff are being utilized, when possible, to keep up with emergency maintenance and other miscellaneous housekeeping type needs. The construction on the kitchen expansion at the Smith Conference Center continues and as of now we see no reason to believe that it won’t be completed as scheduled in late May or early June. Several days ago, any and all perishable food on hand at the camp was donated to an area food bank. I have heard many of our lodges have done the same! This is outstanding! Nick and his team are on stand-by at present waiting word on what schools are going to do, but not ones to sit idly by, they are very busy preparing contingency plans once we are given the all-clear. Should the start of summer camp be delayed, those weeks can be utilized by the groups we had scheduled who had to cancel. More than likely we will still be able to bring our college aged summer camp staff in on time to assist with the groups as well as provide them, our staff, with additional training and involve them in any programming updates required to meet any new needs created by this crisis. We are working very hard to keep our employees active as best we can! Jen is actively manning the phones assisting Elks and campers with answers to their questions. Her e-mail is jen@feyc.org For now, we are continuing as if we will hold a summer camp! We will adjust and communicate as needed!

State Golf Tournament
The state golf tournament has been rescheduled to May 30-31. All villa reservations and golf registrations have already been transferred to these new dates. Any accommodation reservations made on your own will need to be managed on your own. Should you need to cancel your newly transferred villa reservation or golf registration for the new date please contact John Holbrook at jmh@htn.net

“Unmasking Autism” Harry-Anna Gala
The Harry-Anna Gala has been rescheduled to October 17, 2020. Unfortunately the Carillon Hilton is unable to transfer any hotel reservations already made, so if you made one you will need to contact the Carillon Hilton to cancel it or move your reservation to the new date. Their number is (727) 540-0050. I have also been in touch with Dan Masi our Development Director and he wants everyone to know that the table sponsors and many of our major gala supporters are encouraged by the rescheduled date and they are assuring him that any monies already submitted are good to go! In other words no one is asking for their money back! This is heartwarming! Dan has also extended the March 27 deadline date for monies for the “stars” campaign, which many of our lodges are actively participating in. If you have money collected that you wish to send in please make checks payable to Florida Elks Charities and notate in the memo area “star campaign.” Mail your checks to Florida Elks Charities, P.O. Box 49, Umatilla, FL  32784-0049. We anticipate the new deadline to be on or around September 25, 2020. Any questions for Dan please e-mail to dan@floridaelks.org.

State Softball Tournament
The State Softball Tournament has been cancelled for 2020. Already team registrations had been lagging. A decision about continuing to hold a State Softball Tournament will be made at some point in the future. The tournament benefits the Florida Elks Youth Camp.

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