Apartment communities prepare themselves for the crisis in Chennai, India

With the current stay at home and work from home increasing across the world, reached out to some of the apartment communities in India. Spoke to the community managers and was impressed by their leadership, speed of thoughts, ideas and implementation. Felt like sharing what I learned!

Last week when some organizations announced work from home and schools started taking a break, the apartment communities felt they needed to take necessary protocols from their end as well!

  1. Board meeting: Apartment community board / committee met and decided the protocols to handle the scenario and published the minutes to communicate with all the residents
  2. Communication protocols were established – Choose right mode of communication based on criticality and urgency – whatsapp groups, notice boards, flyers, announcements.
    1. Flyers in critical areas were posted to create and sustain awareness about hand wash protocols and sanitization
    2. Community events cancelled for a defined period
    3. Meetings switched to virtual meetings
    4. Management plans, protocols and progress continue to be communicated over email to all the residents
  3. Community areas where more than 10 people can come together will be closed for a defined period
    1. Swimming pool
    2. Playgrounds
    3. Gym
  4. Security guard Stations at the entrance:
    1. Install a hand wash sink near the entrance(s)
      1. Mandatory for all security guards to wash their hands periodically
      2. Mandatory for all entering the apartment community to wash their hands upon entry
      3. Mandatory for all delivery teams to wash their hands upon entry
    2. Designated area setup for food delivery upon entry near the security guard stations
  5. Delivery tie-ups for essentials
    1. Food and grocery – Tied up with a retailer to deliver food and groceries to the apartment community reducing the need for residents to step outside
    2. Medicines – Tie up with the local pharmacy to deliver medicines on request
    3. Delivery protocol – All food and door delivery needs to be accepted at the community entrance. Delivery teams will not be allowed to enter the premises for door delivery to protect the larger part of the community
  6. Health: Anyone exhibiting symptoms will need to self-quarantine and inform the community management.
    1. Contact numbers for local doctors and medical helpline shared
    2. On a case by case basis, based on doctor recommendation, the individuals will continue with their quarantine and treatment plan
  7. Sanitization:
    1. Everyone employed to maintain the apartment community will be required to wash their hands periodically while maintaining the community premises. This includes security guards, sanitization workers, plumbers, electricians, and other support functions as well.
    2. Sanitation teams work in two shifts. Additional help has been employed to support the load.
    3. Garbage removal – Bags must be tied and dropped in the bins. Garbage removal team will wear gloves and handwash is mandated before and after garbage removal
  8. We will review and open the playground, gym and pool based on how we do as a community over the next few weeks.

In 3 days, the community was visibly able to see the difference in the number of food delivery requests going down and the anxiety levels dropped. Residents feel a sense of preparedness and focus on managing their work from within the four walls.

On a lighter note, the community management mentioned “If this prolongs for a longer period, we might need to plan for some virtual activities across the community to keep up the morale :)”

Kudos to the Valencia community management (Chennai based) who agreed to share the protocols to benefit others!

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