BATH – Local community service groups are helping Mandi Residential care for its residents, who are considered to be at high risk for COVID-19, a disease caused by coronavirus.
Bath Housing – which provides affordable housing for seniors, disabled households and families – partnered with Cooking for Community, which provides fast food from local restaurants. This initiative raises money for restaurants to make food for those who need to use as much as possible local products.
Over the past month, Bath Housing has received 140 meals each week made by Mama Mo’s, a restaurant based in Yarmouth that specializes in soups and other delicacies.
“Bathing Housing residents are at high risk [for COVID-19] and many of them feel anxious and isolated, so being able to provide home-cooked food can be very helpful, “said Debora Keller, executive director of Bath Housing. “Every week they get healthy and healthy food made by someone with love.”
Keller said bringing food and other supplies to residents helped them stay safe at home in accordance with orders to stay at Governor Janet Mills’s house, which remained in effect until Sunday.
Cooking for Community has partnered with 10 restaurants and nine social service agencies on Thursday, according to Ellie Linen Low, a volunteer organizer and strategist at Cooking for Community. Over the past six weeks, the organization has sent 10,000 meals to people in need and has sent 2,200 meals per week.
Low said the organization was formed in March “as an immediate emergency response service,” and aims to feed those in need while keeping local restaurants and farmers in business.
Monique Barrett, owner and “head of soup” from Mama Mo, said she was involved with Cooking for Community after a volunteer contacted her “because they needed 140 liters of frozen soup. … it’s like 300 pounds of soup. “
Since then he has made a series of comfort food, such as meatloaf and shepherd’s pie, specifically for Bath Housing. He said Cooking for the Community had enabled him to provide food to those in need while also staying in business.
“One of the biggest things I’ve faced is finding out how to make this a profitable business while still finding ways to help people,” Barrett said. “If someone says, ‘I have no food,’ I will only bring them food. Financially, I can’t give everything, but Cooking for the Community allows me to do that. “
Barrett said giving back to the community was very important to him because he understood what it was like to be someone who needed help.
“I have been a single mother for 10 years, and at that time I was in school and trying to support my family,” he said. “There are times when I need to ask my community for help with food or pay my bills, and I know it’s not easy to ask for help. To get away from needing help and giving help, I just feel grateful. “
Convey essential things
Bath Housing also receives non-food necessities, including toilet paper, detergent, toothpaste, and other cleaning supplies from Midcoast Maine Community Action.
Overall, the Bath Housing and Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program received 7,980 toiletries and hygiene products, which were purchased through Wiscasset Woods Lodge for $ 3,686.83, according to Berkowitz.
Keller said Bath Housing residents identified hygiene products as hard to find, especially toilet paper, which had been in limited supply since COVID-19 reached Maine in March. He said the aim was to bring as many residents as possible so that they would not have to leave the property and put themselves at risk to find it.
“Nobody thinks about (cleaning products), but they are very much needed in people’s daily lives,” said Claire Berkowitz, president and CEO of Midcoast Maine Community Action. “They are items of daily living that we take for granted.”
Berkowitz said Wiscasset Woods Lodge, a hotel 9 miles north of Bath Housing on Route 1, played an important role in getting the hygiene supplies needed by Housing Bath residents at discount prices.
MMCA bought supplies using COVID-19 grant funds from the Maine Community Foundation. In total, the agency received $ 40,000 in grant funds from the Maine Community Foundation to be used for COVID-19 assistance.
“Most of our funds come from state and federal grants, but the funds are very tight,” he said. “The Maine Community Foundation grant allows us to be more agile with what we do to help the community. We can see needs and respond without making sure we comply with federal guidelines. “
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