Long Beach to offer free home meal delivery service for older adults

In an effort to help those impacted by coronavirus and boost the economy, Long Beach will soon offer a free home delivery meal service for older adults in partnership with local food providers and restaurants, officials said Monday.

The Great Plates Delivered Program is part of a statewide effort funded through a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The program will be run by local municipalities, but the state will pay 75% of the cost of the meals per person, each day—$16 for breakfasts, $17 for lunches and up to $28 for dinners.

“This is a great opportunity to support the older adults in our community who are most in need at this time, as well as assist the food service industry which has been severely impacted as a result of the public health crisis,” Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia said in a statement.

The program will provide up to three free meals daily to qualified adults over 65 years of age, or adults 60-64 who are at high risk of contracting COVID-19. 

The city on Monday launched a request for proposals (RFP) period for applications from businesses. The period ends at 11 a.m. on Thursday.

Preference will be given to locally-owned or locally-sourced businesses, those that prioritize local jobs and worker retention, and those that can provide meals that can be frozen and reheated, as well as meeting nutritional standards and other state guidelines.

Business owners interesting in applying through the RFP process can visit the Financial Management Purchasing Division webpage.

The city will select multiple local food providers. The program is expected to begin on May 29 and continue through June 10, but it could extend through July under a state request

This program is unrelated to a similar effort connected to the World Central Kitchen in Long Beach. Launched about a month ago, it uses the kitchen staff of four local restaurants—The Ordinarie, Lola’s Mexican Cuisine, The Breakfast Bar, and Roxanne’s—to feed senior communities across the city.

For questions related to the RFP, contact [email protected].

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Kelly Puente is a general assignment and special projects reporter at the Long Beach Post. Her prolific reporting has taken her all over Southern California—even to the small Catalina Island town of Two Harbors. She is a Tiki mug collector and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in public policy and administration at Cal State Long Beach. Reach her at [email protected].