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COMMUNITY FOOD DRIVE PROJECT SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

The Community Food Drive Project (CFDP), a collaboration between several different organizations, successfully delivered food to over 30 households in its first week of operation. Each household received two bags of food containing a variation of about 9 pounds of fresh produce, a fresh protein, eggs, cheese, and several non-perishable items like applesauce, oatmeal, canned peas, marinara sauce, pasta, canned meat, peanut butter, jelly, bread, and more. The total approximate retail value was $125 per household. The next food drive is slated for Friday, May 1 with an even larger number of households projected to receive a delivery.

The CFDP aims to deliver food directly to the homes of Lake County residents impacted by COVID-19, focusing on those who have experienced lost wages, do not have transportation, are medically fragile and who may be symptomatic. The goal of the project is to fill a gap, serving those who are not currently accessing other community food resources. Food is delivered directly to people’s homes by drivers and vehicles provided by Lake Transit Authority. Any community member in need of food is encouraged to call 707-993-4644 or email CFDP@lakecountyca.gov and apply for assistance. Bilingual support is available.

“We encourage residents who need groceries to contact us. We can provide food directly through the CFDP, refer people to other community food resources, and make sure our senior citizen population is connected with the right support services” says Crystal Markytan, Director of Lake County Department of Social Services. “We’re in this together and we want to help people while supporting resources offered by county partners.”

The CFDP depends on community donations. “We are grateful to our community for the donations from organizations and individuals,” says Robyn Bera, Director of Community Projects for North Coast Opportunities. “We will do our best to continue this project throughout the COVID-19 crisis.”  Donations can be made by mail to North Coast Opportunities: Community Food Drive Project, 413 N. State Street, Ukiah CA 95482 or online here.  Agency partners in this collaboration include: Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Santa Rosa, Hope Crisis Response Network, Hope Rising Lake County, Lake County Department of Social Services, Lake County Office of Education, Lake County Tribal Health, Lakeport Senior Center, Lake Transit Authority, North Coast Opportunities and Partnership Health Plan.

The Covid19 Senior Resource Hotline connects senior citizens to active senior centers.  The hotline is not exclusive to a specific senior center. “Together, local senior centers serve roughly 1000 of the 15,441 people over aged 65 in Lake County,” says Jonathan Crooks of Lakeport Senior Center. “The hotline has simplified the process for residents and created a stronger collaboration between senior centers.” Any individual over the age of 60 is encouraged to call 888-861-8622 to get the resources they need to stay home and safe. Qualifying seniors are eligible for two meals per day delivered to their homes. Grocery shopping and food pantry deliveries may also be available to those over 65.  Meals are partially funded through grants administered by the PSA26 Area Agency on Aging, the Meals on Wheels Thrift Store, and the fundraising efforts of local centers. 

“I am so impressed, but not surprised at how quickly this team was able to get the Community Food Drive Project off the ground” adds Allison Panella, Executive Director of Hope Rising Lake County. “The fast thinking and considerate actions of so many local organizations is just one example of what makes Lake County a hometown for the heart. We are honored to participate with this project and serve our community.”

Residents who need groceries are encouraged to call 707-993-4644 or email CFDP@lakecountyca.gov. Residents over age 60 are encouraged to call 888-561-8622. Agencies, individuals or community groups wishing to support this effort should contact Robyn Bera at rbera@ncoinc.org or by calling 707-278-8696. More information is available at www.hoperisinglc.org/CommunityFoodDriveProject.

Program(s) Involved: Community Wellness Projects New Digs: Lake County Volunteer Network