Elk Grove Food Bank Services is collaborating with the Rotary Club of Laguna Sunrise to deliver meals to local seniors who are self-quarantined during the coronavirus situation.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom on March 15 urged the state’s seniors, ages 65 or older, to stay home since they are highly vulnerable to infection.

There are 174 seniors in Elk Grove who are considered to be “at-risk” of not being able to access food and will need groceries in the last two weeks of March, according to the food bank and the Rotarians.

The new grocery project seeks to raise at least $7,000 in order to provide a weekly bag of groceries for each senior in need. This outreach effort also needs volunteers to package and deliver the groceries to residents at senior complexes across Elk Grove.

Each volunteer will be screened for novel coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms and will each protective gear.

Kevin Spease, a Laguna Sunrise Rotarian as well as a former Elk Grove planning commissioner, is co-organizing the project.

“The coronavirus is a very serious and deadly concern for many seniors in Elk Grove,” he said in a March 12 press statement. “Adding to the problem is that many seniors don’t have a support system to provide them with food during self-quarantine.”

Marie Jachino, the executive director of Elk Grove Food Bank Services, spoke of the importance of helping local seniors in need.

“This becomes increasingly critical, as many of the almost 1,400 seniors we serve each month have very limited resources to withstand an extended crisis,” she said in a press statement.

Jachino noted that the food bank’s staff is following safety guidelines from state and Sacramento County public health departments. They are providing gloves to volunteers who handle food, advise staff and volunteers to stay home if they feel ill or contacted sick people, and they are sanitizing surfaces and door handles at their facility.

“We anticipate that the need for emergency assistance will grow as the situation continues to unfold,” Jachino said. “I am confident we will get through this together and we appreciate your continued support.”  

For cash donations for the senior project, visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/support-elk-grove-senior-shutin-during-covid19. Readers who want to volunteer in the project are asked to contact Kevin Spease at kevin.spease@gmail.com.