The Seattle Times: Senior Centers find new models to get food to vulnerable seniors

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Typical meal at the Senior Center

The Shoreline - Lake Forest Park Senior Center was recognized in this article published in The Seattle Times in April: These helpers are fighting the coronavirus by delivering hot lunches and groceries to Seattle area seniors

The article reviews senior centers all around Seattle and talks about the creative ways that all have shifted from serving food in their centers, to an all delivery model.

They are all inventing it as they go.

Shoreline Senior Center is proud of the tasty and nutritious meals they provide.

Donnie Bland, chef at Shoreline-Lake Forest Park Senior Center, includes dessert with every lunch he cooks. Sound Generations, which manages the Shoreline program and other congregate meal sites, is delivering 1,800 hot meals weekly.

Shoreline serves the entire north end and gets more clients every day as social service agencies identify and refer more shut-in seniors for food deliveries.

Quotes from The Times article:

So many people are living close to the edge. In Shoreline, “people who aren’t even senior-center members are calling” for deliveries, program coordinator Donna Saltzberg said. Many clients “are waiting outside when we come,” said volunteer David Drummond, riding in a Hyde shuttle with grocery bags around his knees. 
Behind the wheel was longtime driver Thai Le. He and Drummond bantered about their kids while steering through Shoreline. 
“That’s Thai’s bus,” Margaret Thue said, delighted to recognize his shuttle through her living room window. The 94-year-old last ventured outside March 8. 
Born in Vietnam, Le lives in the Seattle area because strangers sponsored him years ago, as a refugee. Everyone needs help at some point, he said. 
“When the country really needs you, you have to stand up,” said Le, explaining why he wanted to deliver to seniors during the crisis. Nodding toward Drummond, he added, “Someday, we’re going to get old, too.”

The Senior Center is providing meals with a $50,000 grant from the City of Shoreline.

They still lack sufficient funding for operating costs and are currently running a fund drive through the GiveBIG program.


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