There is no doubt that the Coronavirus has forced all us all to change the way we live for the greater good. There are many different groups that are highly susceptible to the virus. One of those groups are Seniors. As a result, simple things, like getting groceries have become high-risk for Seniors. Stepping in to bridge the gap and help keep our elderly stay safe as we learn to cope and overcome COVID-19 is the Area Agency on Aging of Broward County.
The Agency has delivered 19,576 free meals since March 27th and assisted more than 675 Seniors. They deliver an average of 3,000 – 5,000 meals a day and they are committed to delivering food throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Community of Helpers
The Area Agency on Aging of Broward County is able to support the elderly through the generosity of other groups. United Way of Broward County, Ultimate Software and Humana have donated a total of $60,000 to help the effort while staff and community volunteers, including personnel from Cano Health, have been delivering the meals to Seniors in need.
“The partnership between the Area Agency on Aging of Broward County, The United Way of Broward County, Ultimate Software, and Humana is a perfect example of our community coming together in a time of need to help the most at-risk population for this pandemic – our Senior citizens. We could not be more thankful for the support of these companies to help fulfill one of life’s basic needs – healthy, nutritious food”.
-Charlotte Mather-Taylor, Executive Director of the Area Agency on Aging of Broward County.
Meals Prepared Safely And For All
All of the meals are prepared by a local, high-quality food catering company, therefore also helping a local business and economy. Seniors may choose between kosher, pureed, vegetarian, low sodium, and diabetic meals.
The strictest sanitary guidelines are followed by not only the caterer, but by all delivery staff and Agency staff. The caterer delivers the pallets of food boxes to the agency headquarters each morning.
Meals Delivered Safely
To insure the deliveries are safe, the delivery staff from Cano health all wear gloves and masks. When the delivery drivers arrive at the Senior’s residence, they will knock on the door, and place the food either on the ground or a chair/table outside the door and step back 6 ft from the door. They do not leave until the Senior either opens the door, or acknowledges through the phone or window that they are home. They cannot leave frozen meals on the doorstep if no one is home.
“The partnership with Cano Health allows us, the Area Agency on Aging of Broward County, to more effectively and efficiently serve the needs of Broward seniors. By having Cano Health deliver the meals, this allows our staff to focus on answering the hundreds of helpline calls that come in daily to request meals”
– Charlotte Mather-Taylor, Executive Director of the Area Agency on Aging of Broward County.
How to Sign Up to Receive Meals
If you have are ready to sign-up today or if any further questions, please contact 954-745-9779.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What makes a senior eligible to receive meals?
They need to be a Senior, age 60 or above and be a resident of Broward County. They cannot be receiving food services from Meals On Wheels or a Senior Community Center already, but can be receiving other forms of assistance.
- How does the sign-up process work? I know that they have to call, is there any information they should have gathered when they call?
Callers need to provide their contact information, delivery information (address, gated community, gate code?), and a few short questions (are you experiencing a food shortage because of the pandemic, how many weeks of food do you want, how do you normally obtain food (shopping at Publix, etc). That’s it!
- How long does it take them to be approved to receive meals?
Depending on the call volume, it may take 2 – 3 days to process the application, but we normally are able to process them in 1 – 2 days.
- Is there an income requirement to receive meals?
- How much food does there a senior receive, per day, per week?
The food comes pre-packed in 1 week boxes – 14 meals per box. 7 breakfasts and 7 frozen meals (that can be used as either lunch or dinner). Seniors can choose to receive either a 1 week or 2 week supply – their choice. ADRC staff will reach out to the Senior a few days before their food is set to run out, to ask if the Senior wants an additional food delivery. If so, we will make an additional delivery of food and will continue this process throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Are there meals for people with dietary restrictions like diabetes?
Yes, we have kosher, pureed, vegetarian, low sodium, and diabetic meals available.
If you would like to help with the COVID-19 food instability crisis, please contact the AAABC at 954-745-9567 to volunteer or donate.