Coronavirus Relief Grant
Checkbox-571: #1, #5
Address: 4729 Albury Ave
Officer-title: Board President
Tel-952: 562) 758-0060
SecondaryPhone: 562) 758-0060
GrantPurpose: Providing Food & Critical Supplies to Home-Bound & Low-Income Individuals Affected by Covid-19 in the Long Beach/Lakewood Area
Periodoftime: 3 months
Audienceserved: Low-income, elderly, house-bound, food insecure, widows, single mothers, children/youth & disabled
Demoofaudience: 55+ house-bound, families with low-income/lost jobs and children, single mothers/widows with children who have lost their jobs
District: District 8
1. What disaster recovery service have already been provided? : To date, we have provided 112 bags of groceries to individuals in North Long Beach who are struggling due to the pandemic. The bags have included healthy staples that provide balanced meals, including protein and staples such as rice, beans, pasta, boxes of cereal and more. The bags have been delivered by our members to house-bound seniors and also provided at multiple contactless drive-thru pickups at the church for low-income families who have food scarcity due to Covid-19 job loss and other economic conditions.
This program has been focused on meeting the needs in North Long Beach, where many of our members live and where our Board President teaches. Due to our deep roots in this community and knowing the needs of the North Long Beach area, our primary focus is this part of the City of Long Beach. To that end, we have solidified our partnership with Councilmember Al Austin’s office, which has assisted by promoting our grocery help and pasta dinners to the North Long Beach Community. Through grassroots outreach, we have also been able to reach individuals that are unlikely to receive help otherwise.
For example, one of our members knew of an elderly lady who is blind and unable to walk. When the groceries were delivered to her door, she broke into tears and said that she literally had run out of food and didn’t know what she would do for the next day. The grocery assistance was a huge help to her and she was extremely grateful.
Another senior couple is house-bound because the husband is bed-ridden and his wife is his sole caretaker. They speak Spanish only and have extremely limited funds. When they received the delivery of groceries, the lady broke into tears and said that she was so grateful that strangers cared for them because they don’t know too many people who could help them in this difficult time.
In addition to providing the grocery assistance, we work with a non-profit that is donating 120 cooked pasta dinners to us every week. We have provided 120 meals per week for 4-weeks, free of charge, to individuals and families in need. This has been extremely well received. We do contactless drive-thru pickup and deliveries for seniors and house-bound individuals. This program is open to individuals from Long Beach, Lakewood and surrounding areas.
Another program helps elderly people with pet food. One elderly man was concerned that he would not be able to keep his dog unless he got assistance with food. Because of this, he can keep his beloved companion during this difficult time.
Our church also created a meal train for a local retired pastor who is house-bound due to his Chemo treatments. We are committed to finding needs and finding ways to meet those needs.
Finally, we have a licensed therapist who assists with making follow-up calls to our house-bound elderly. This addresses trauma and loneliness amongst the house-bound. This has been a life-line for some of our seniors.
2. What additional services, above your standard operations, will be conducted with this grant funding?: We will utilize this funding to continue the grocery assistance for house-bound seniors and low-income families in North Long Beach. The need is great and continues to grow every day. We are receiving daily phone calls with heart-breaking situations involving families and seniors who can not, as they put it, “put food on the table.”
One lady, for example, is taking care of her elderly mother. She lost hours at her job, due to cuts, and she said it is very difficult to make ends meet and put food on the table right now. She was extremely grateful for the assistance in helping to feed her mother.
This funding will be utilized to continue purchasing and distributing groceries to those in need. We have been utilizing cost-saving strategies such as shopping in bulk, purchasing at retail wholesalers and having members procure special deals on products, in order to bring our price-per-bag to the minimum, so we can help the maximum number of people. Our pastors and members are volunteering a lot of time and effort to ensure that this funding can be stretched “to the max” and help people who truly need it.
Because of a generous grant from the Long Beach Community Foundation in April, we have been able to provide groceries to many people in need of assistance. The need has substantially grown since then. Therefore, we are seeking additional funding before this funding runs out. We have been receiving daily calls and requests for groceries. We don’t want to turn away anyone who needs food. This additional source of funding will allow us to ensure that the needs and requests are being met. We will also continue to seek other sources of funding, as well as donations, to supplement the grant.
Essentially, this request is to continue and potentially grow the number of people we can help with their food needs. The funding will be used to buy food.
3. What individuals (and/or organizations) will you assist? : At this time, we have a growing list of individuals in need. They are seeking food/grocery assistance and many of them will need ongoing support. The people we are assisting are primarily living in North Long Beach in the 90805 zipcode, located in Long Beach’s District 8. They include house-bound, low-income seniors, families, single parents with children and widows/widowers both with/without children.
Most households served are dealing with lost jobs, wages, health issues, or a combination of these factors. Every household is dealing with the effects of the pandemic making things more difficult upon their ability to obtain adequate food.
Individuals needing assistance include examples such as the following:
-Elderly, housebound individuals with limited resources
-Elderly, housebound couples with limited resources
-Widowed single mother with 3 children who is their sole caretaker and can not work
-Single mothers with multiple children, some working, some lost hours, some can not work due to being primary caretaker and no funds for childcare
-Single fathers with multiple children who can not work due to being primary caretaker or lost job
These individuals represent the cultural diversity of North Long Beach and include Spanish-only speaking individuals as well as English-only speakers. Strength.Church is proud to have a Spanish Outreach Coordinator who reaches out to the Spanish speakers and advocates for their needs. She ensures that nobody is left out due to a language barrier.
One of the important things to note is that many of the individuals being helped are either seniors or children in need.
4. What other disaster recovery funds have you received? What amount?: We have received:
– A $1,500 grant from the Long Beach Community Foundation.
-Donations from our members to support this work in addition to the grant funding
– Pasta dinners from Caterina’s Club
5. What other disaster recovery funds have you applied for?: We have applied for assistance from local grocery stores and congregations offering grants. We continue to ask our members to support our efforts as well.