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Connecting COVID-19 Vulnerable Populations to Groceries, Meals and More
Article posted:  April 7, 2020, 5:30 p.m.

[A message from the Topanga Community Center]

Amid the chaos of the COVD-19 pandemic, Topanga did what we’ve always done -- we came together as a community (figuratively speaking, of course).

On March 13, shortly after the mandatory quarantine had been announced, TCC volunteers created online intake forms for seniors and vulnerable populations to be matched with volunteers looking to help with grocery delivery and prescription pickup.

Since then, more than 40 Topanga neighbors have filled out the form and been matched with someone who can help them. Most noteworthy is that only a few hours after the email looking for assistance went out, the TCC was flooded with volunteers willing and eager to help. The volunteers are given a list of social distancing guidelines and if they desire, provided with gloves, hand sanitizer, and a face mask. But most importantly, the fact that the supply was greater than the demand is incredibly touching. As has been said before, if you haven’t been paired, please remain open to volunteering as we are sure the need will grow over time.

The Canyon Sages have been working with programs such as Meals on Wheels — hoping to get meals to seniors who reside in the canyon and are unable to cook. As you can imagine, these programs are experiencing delays due to the demand, but rather than wait, some local heroes are stepping up to heed the call to action.

Lifelong Topangan and TCC member Kristina Rocco Levy has emerged as a hero for many in the canyon. Levy, whose family name is a canyon favorite, recognized the need for a home-cooked meal. Rocco’s Cucina in Topanga has changed hands, but Rocco’s Cucina in Pacific Palisades is cranking out meals to go every day.

While we wait for the Meals on Wheels program to begin in the canyon, Levy and her team have coordinated with the TCC’s Canyon Sages to identify those who need it most, and is preparing meals 3 times a week for more than 50 seniors in need until the Meals on Wheels program is able to serve this population.

Kristina and her family do this out of the kindness of their hearts, but if you can, please consider ordering a meal from Rocco's Cucina (they do group deliveries Monday-Saturday in the canyon from 5-6:30 at Pine Tree Circle and it’s always good to support our local businesses, such as Rocco's in a time like this) or donating toward the cause to the Topanga Community Center (denote “meals” when making your donation). You can also send funds to Kristina Levy directly via Venmo @Kristina-Levy.

If you or someone you know needs assistance, or if you can offer assistance, please click here.

There are so many people who have been working tirelessly and generously to make this happen. Although we desperately want to name everyone who given selflessly of themselves during this time, we think it is safer to wait until the pandemic is passed and we all have our heads on straight so that we don’t miss anyone. However, know that although we all come from different walks of life and occasionally disagree with one another on Nextdoor and Facebook and probably any other social networking sites, the thing that makes Topanga incredibly special is that at the end of the day we have each other’s back.

That level of kindness, generosity, and love is what makes our canyon special and makes us all feel lucky to live here. None of this would be possible without each and every one of our volunteers, so we thank you. Honestly, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you.

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