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Food Delivery and Other New and Expanded Resources for Seniors

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Through New Program, Restaurants Will Be Reimbursed for Prepping Daily Meals for Nearby Seniors, Plus Other New Resources for Elderly Residents
Article posted:  April 25, 2020, 3:30 p.m.

In his Friday briefing, Governor Gavin Newsom announced a partnership between the State of California and FEMA, the first of its kind in the nation, to reimburse local restaurants for preparing regular meals for vulnerable seniors.

The Restaurants Deliver: Home Meals for Seniors program will enlist community restaurants to prepare meals that will be delivered to older Californians who are isolating at home during California’s stay at home order. The program will be administered by local authorities and will serve older Californians who are ineligible for other nutrition programs.

The Administration will keep updated information on the COVID-19 website on which localities are participating.

The plan will also help restaurants impacted by the crisis by allowing them to rehire laid-off employees. It would also generate much-needed sales tax revenues for local economies.

Seniors can call 211 to find out if they are eligible for the program. Learn more at https://covid19.ca.gov/restaurants-deliver-home-meals-for-seniors/

(For information on local meal and grocery assistance for Topangans, read our previous stories on the topic: click here and here.)

Other Important New Resources for Seniors Also Announced

Governor Newsom also announced that the Friendship Line California would be expanded to provide emotional support to lonely and isolated seniors throughout California.

Seniors can call the Friendship Line at 888-670-1360.

Additionally, Newsom reported that the Social Bridging Project was mobilizing more than 1,000 callers to proactively reach out to older Californians who are isolating at home. Another program, Listos California, is partnering with the California Department of Aging, United Airlines, Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), and Sacramento State University to make calls to older Californians. Callers will check on the individual’s well-being, connect them to resources, and connect with them on a personal level.

“The most important way for older Californians to stay safe is to stay at home,” said Governor Newsom. “These programs will provide older, vulnerable Californians with access to nutritious meals in the safety of their homes and the opportunity to connect with someone who can listen to their concerns and make sure their needs are met. We are all in this together and we will continue to support older Californians who are more at risk during this public health emergency.”

The announcements build on the government's previous work to support seniors through the Stay Home. Save Lives. Check In. campaign to help combat social isolation among older Californians. The campaign urges all Californians to check in on their older neighbors with a call, text or physically-distanced door knock.

Californians are also encouraged to join the #CaliforniansForAll initiative by signing up at CalifornainsForAll.ca.gov. #CaliforniansForAll unites organizations in desperate need of volunteers with Californians looking to serve and share their commitment to their neighbors, while ensuring stay-at-home and physical distancing protocols are met. The initiative will focus on recruiting younger Californians to help the most vulnerable throughout the state, including older Californians who are at higher risk of serious illness due to COVID-19.

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