Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families

by Community Servings
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Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families
Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families
Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families
Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families
Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families

COVID-19 Crisis Response

As an “Essential Services Provider” Community Servings is working on the frontlines. In order to address the crisis across the community, we are seeking additional funding for the following purposes:

  • Increase kitchen capacity to produce 16,000 meals per week to reach more high-risk/high-need populations.

  • Increase home-delivery of 10 meals per week with the goal of serving 1,600 food-insecure, severely ill, immune- suppressed clients per day.

  • In partnership with the City of Boston, expand our feeding program during the height of the pandemic to produce 2,500 meals per week for include food-insecure and high-risk Boston residents, providing our microwave- ready, scratch-made meals for partner agencies able to pick them up from our kitchens in Jamaica Plain.

  • Increase purchasing of emergency food supplies.

  • Assemble and ship thousands of medically tailored shelf- stable food boxes to ensure clients have reserves of food in the event of disruptions in delivery.

  • Shift our business operations, which relied heavily on 50- 75 volunteers per day, to a fully paid staff to limit the risk of exposure and streamline operations. This will require hiring up to 14 new kitchen and delivery staff, drawing from laid-off restaurant and food vendor workers.

  • Increase safety and sanitation of our building and delivery vans, including institution of a “no-contact” delivery method.

  • Invest in additional equipment and technology to ensure staff that need to be home due to childcare and/or preexisting health conditions can work remotely.

My pantry is more stocked up than it’s been in a long time. I now feel safe and prepared during this challenging time. Thank you, Community Servings, for everything you do! ~Community Servings Client

Stocking up on food is always hard for me. In addition to my meals, I am so grateful for the extra boxes of food that you sent me. Thank you!” ~Community Servings Client

 

 

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COVID-19 Crisis Response

As an “Essential Services Provider” Community Servings is working on the frontlines. In order to address the crisis across the community, we are seeking additional funding for the following purposes:

  • Increase kitchen capacity to produce 16,000 meals per week to reach more high-risk/high-need populations.

  • Increase home-delivery of 10 meals per week with the goal of serving 1,600 food-insecure, severely ill, immune- suppressed clients per day.

  • In partnership with the City of Boston, expand our feeding program during the height of the pandemic to produce 2,500 meals per week for include food-insecure and high-risk Boston residents, providing our microwave- ready, scratch-made meals for partner agencies able to pick them up from our kitchens in Jamaica Plain.

  • Increase purchasing of emergency food supplies.

  • Assemble and ship thousands of medically tailored shelf- stable food boxes to ensure clients have reserves of food in the event of disruptions in delivery.

  • Shift our business operations, which relied heavily on 50- 75 volunteers per day, to a fully paid staff to limit the risk of exposure and streamline operations. This will require hiring up to 14 new kitchen and delivery staff, drawing from laid-off restaurant and food vendor workers.

  • Increase safety and sanitation of our building and delivery vans, including institution of a “no-contact” delivery method.

  • Invest in additional equipment and technology to ensure staff that need to be home due to childcare and/or preexisting health conditions can work remotely.

My pantry is more stocked up than it’s been in a long time. I now feel safe and prepared during this challenging time. Thank you, Community Servings, for everything you do!~Community Servings Client

Stocking up on food is always hard for me. In addition to my meals, I am so grateful for the extra boxes of food that you sent me. Thank you!” ~Community Servings Client

 

 

Links:

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Major Activities and Accomplishments

Over the past year, we provided 549,729 medically tailored meals to 2,012 clients, their dependent children and caregivers who were affected by critical and chronic illnesses such as cancer, renal disease, HIV and multiple sclerosis. Of those served, 94% were living in poverty, more than 40% were families, and 62% were from communities of color. These clients received 15 different medical diets, customized in a variety of combinations to meet their medical and nutritional needs.

Notably, our most recent research study, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Evidence for Action program, was published in April in JAMA – Internal Medicine. This study provides strong new evidence linking medically tailored meal interventions to improved health outcomes and lower medical costs for high-need, high-cost patients. This groundbreaking study is the largest and most rigorous evaluation of medically tailored meals, to date. 

Additional Activities and Accomplishments

Nutrition Education & Counseling

  • We provided 4,771 hours of nutrition education and counseling to more than 2,000 individuals through on and off-site classes, monthly newsletters, workshops/presentations, phone counseling, and nutrition assessments/reassessments. 

 “Food Is Medicine” Food & Health Policy Initiative

  • In partnership with Harvard Law School’s Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation, we launched the nation's first Food is Medicine State Plan, which explores the need for and access to Food is Medicine interventions and sets forth policy recommendations to advance access for intrastate interventions. As part of the project’s two-year planning and information gathering process, we conducted 11 listening sessions across the state.

Volunteer Program

  • Over the past year, 8,000 volunteers have contributed almost 52,000 hours, helping us prepare, package and deliver our meals. 

Local Foods Program

  • Through our Local Foods program, we integrated 120,000 pounds of fresh local produce from ten area farms and sources into our medically tailored meals. This includes donated surplus produce and purchased local foods products.

 Teaching Kitchen Food-Service Job Training Program

  • Over the past year, we enrolled 34 trainees in one of four, 12-week job training sessions. All of our job trainees are low-income with multiple major barriers to employment such as criminal records and homelessness.
  • Eighty percent (80%) of graduates have found meaningful employment in our community, and the majority (75%) retained their job for 30+ days.

Looking Ahead

  • We are on track to complete this project by November 2019, and a ribbon-cutting event is planned for December 17th.
    • Joining us for this important occasion will be Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker as well as other key dignitaries.
  • We will continue to fundraise for the capital project until the ribbon-cutting event.
  • In addition to construction and fundraising, we just finalized a five-year strategic plan to articulate our goals for our “Food Campus” and prepare for significant programmatic growth in the new building.

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Salads being prepped to deliver to our clients!
Salads being prepped to deliver to our clients!

Dear Friend,

On behalf of Community Servings’ clients, volunteers, and staff, thank you again for your generosity. Over the past year we have had great success in our effort to prevent hunger among low-income individuals and families affected by critical illness. 

Over the past year, we have provided 650,000 medically tailored meals to over 2,300 individuals who were living with more than 25 different life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, renal disease, HIV/AIDS and multiple sclerosis.  In addition, we experienced successful outcomes in our nutrition education, job-training, volunteer, local foods and food and health policy programs as detailed in the attached report.

Thank you again for your generous commitment to Community Servings and the clients we serve.  

Sincerely,

David B. Waters

CEO

MAJOR ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Nutrition Program

  • Through our Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families Affected by Critical and Chronic Illnesses we provided 619,418 meals to 2,041 men, women and children in our program who were affected by a critical illness in last 12 months, exceeding our projections of meals and clients served this year.
  • More than 25,000 nutrition supplements and 750 Nausea Care Packs were provided to clients at the highest level of nutritional vulnerability.
  • Of those served, 94% were living in poverty and 50% were families. Eleven percent (11%) of our clients were 18 years old or younger. Seventy-four percent (74%) of those served were critically ill clients and 26% were dependents and caregivers. Sixty-four percent (64%) of our clients were from racial/ethnic minorities.
  • 57% of clients who responded to our annual Client Survey, said that in the month before starting Community Servings’ nutrition program they were concerned about having enough food to eat for themselves and their family. After starting our meals 72% said this was no longer a concern. Additional results showed 70% reporting that our meals were helping them achieve their weight goals, 63% of the respondents said that their energy levels have increased or stabilized since they began receiving our meals and 65% reported that the meals were excellent or good at meeting their cultural preferences.
  • We maintained more than 200 referral partnerships with area health and social service organizations to ensure we are reaching clients and families living at the highest levels of nutritional vulnerability.
  • Through our Health Care Initiative, we have secured six contracts with health insurers and providers who reimburse the cost of our medically tailored meals for their sick and food insecure patients.


 Volunteer Program

  • Our kitchen is producing an average of 2,600 meals per day. This would not have been possible without the help of 6,300 volunteers who donated over 50,000 hours over the fiscal year, helping us prepare, package and deliver our meals.


Local Foods Program

  • Through our Local Foods program, we received 55,000 pounds of donated produce from eight local farm sources.
  • Through a local foods grant, we undertaken a partnership with Red Tomato, a local food aggregator based in Plainville, MA that provides wholesale distribution from eight MA farms. Working with a local food aggregator will enable us to streamline purchasing of some products through one source and ensure our large produce orders can be filled.


Nutrition Education

  • Over the past year, we also exceeded our projections for nutrition education, delivering 6,000 hours of nutrition education to 2,400 individuals affected by critical or chronic illness. This includes our successful “Farm to Fork” program that offers free shares of local produce from farm partners coupled with on-site nutrition education in our Nutrition Classroom.  


“Food Is Medicine” Food & Health Policy Initiative

  • The results of our research project evaluating the impact of our meals on health and healthcare costs was recently published in Health Affairs. This study, undertaken in partnership with Massachusetts General Hospital, showed across the board reductions in “big ticket” items –including hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and ambulance services resulting in a 16% average net reduction in healthcare costs. This study was featured in a May 2018 Food is Medicine Congressional Briefing on Capitol Hill.
  • We have completed the first year of our three-year research study, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Community Servings is just one of 22 grantees nationwide.
  • We have research and food and health policy partnerships with MA General Hospital, the Nonprofit Finance Fund, and the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School. We are also a founding member of both the Food is Medicine Coalition, a partnership of 17 sister agencies and the national Root Cause Coalition, focused on social determinants of health. In partnership with the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School and the BCBSMA Foundation, we are leading the development of the nation's first Food is Medicine State Plan, which we expect to be released in early 2019. This plan will assess existing Food is Medicine interventions and set forth policy recommendations that will advance access for intrastate interventions.  
  • We also presented our nutrition model at several national conferences including: 2017 Society of General Internal Medicine annual conference in Washington D.C., 2017 Root Cause Coalition and 2017 Putting Care at the Center conference, the annual conference of the National Center for Complex Health and Social Needs.
  • In October 2017, we co-hosted our fifth “Food Is Medicine” Symposium with Harvard Law School’s Center for Health with over 150 attendees.


Teaching Kitchen Food-Service Job Training Program

  • Over the past year we have received 80 applications for 40 trainee spots. We accepted 44 and of those 37 enrolled and 24 (65%) graduated. Nineteen (19) trainees elected to take the MA ServSafe exam, 15 (79%) passed this exam.
  • 87% of placed graduates have retained their job for 30 days or more.
  • Among our trainees 100% were unemployed/underemployed, 100% were low-income, 62% were from communities of color, 59% were ex-offenders, 41% were women and 65% were homeless. Over the past two years, we have experienced a significant increase in trainees with multiple major barriers to employment.
  • This year we worked closely with 45 different referral partners who referred potential trainees to our program, including The Work Place, JobNet, and Career Link. Other referral partners include: Access to Recovery, Boston Juvenile Re-Entry Initiative at Roxbury Youthworks, Youth Build, Youth Options Unlimited (YOU), Suffolk County Department of Corrections.
  • We maintained relationships with 100 employment partners including hotels, hospitals, restaurants and smaller food-service facilities such as residential programs.

“Food Campus” Capital Expansion Project

  • We are in the process of building and renovating our 31,000 square foot “Food Campus” which will nearly triple our capacity to produce 1.5M medically tailored meals annually.
  • We have raised $11M toward our $12M “Food is the Foundation” capital campaign goal to-date.

Challenges We are actively engaged in building investment in our capital expansion project to create a 31,000 square foot "Food Campus" that will enable us to triple our capacity. The urgency for this capital expansion cannot be understated. Today, we have a waiting list of 150 individuals who have been medically certified as needing our medically tailored nutrition program. Our kitchen is operating at maximum designed capacity and we simply do not have enough slots to start clients who are in need upon referral. Clients are prioritized based on a framework of illness severity and isolation and many are on our waitlist for three to six months before starting our meals. For these sick and nutritionally vulnerable clients and their families, this waiting period is extremely difficult and often detrimental to their ability to manage their illness. 

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

Dear Friend,

On behalf of Community Servings’ clients, volunteers, and staff, thank you again for your generosity. Over the past year we have had great success in our effort to prevent hunger among low-income individuals and families affected by critical illness. 

Over the past year, we have provided 650,000 medically tailored meals to over 2,300 individuals who were living with more than 25 different life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, renal disease, HIV/AIDS and multiple sclerosis.  In addition, we experienced successful outcomes in our nutrition education, job-training, volunteer, local foods and food and health policy programs as detailed in the attached report.

Thank you again for your generous commitment to Community Servings and the clients we serve.  

Sincerely,

David B. Waters

CEO

MAJOR ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Nutrition Program

  • Through our Nutrition Program for Individuals and Families Affected by Critical and Chronic Illnesses we provided 619,418 meals to 2,041 men, women and children in our program who were affected by a critical illness in last 12 months, exceeding our projections of meals and clients served this year.
  • More than 25,000 nutrition supplements and 750 Nausea Care Packs were provided to clients at the highest level of nutritional vulnerability.
  • Of those served, 94% were living in poverty and 50% were families. Eleven percent (11%) of our clients were 18 years old or younger. Seventy-four percent (74%) of those served were critically ill clients and 26% were dependents and caregivers. Sixty-four percent (64%) of our clients were from racial/ethnic minorities.
  • 57% of clients who responded to our annual Client Survey, said that in the month before starting Community Servings’ nutrition program they were concerned about having enough food to eat for themselves and their family. After starting our meals 72% said this was no longer a concern. Additional results showed 70% reporting that our meals were helping them achieve their weight goals, 63% of the respondents said that their energy levels have increased or stabilized since they began receiving our meals and 65% reported that the meals were excellent or good at meeting their cultural preferences.
  • We maintained more than 200 referral partnerships with area health and social service organizations to ensure we are reaching clients and families living at the highest levels of nutritional vulnerability.
  • Through our Health Care Initiative, we have secured six contracts with health insurers and providers who reimburse the cost of our medically tailored meals for their sick and food insecure patients.


 Volunteer Program

  • Our kitchen is producing an average of 2,600 meals per day. This would not have been possible without the help of 6,300 volunteers who donated over 50,000 hours over the fiscal year, helping us prepare, package and deliver our meals.


Local Foods Program

  • Through our Local Foods program, we received 55,000 pounds of donated produce from eight local farm sources.
  • Through a local foods grant, we undertaken a partnership with Red Tomato, a local food aggregator based in Plainville, MA that provides wholesale distribution from eight MA farms. Working with a local food aggregator will enable us to streamline purchasing of some products through one source and ensure our large produce orders can be filled.


Nutrition Education

  • Over the past year, we also exceeded our projections for nutrition education, delivering 6,000 hours of nutrition education to 2,400 individuals affected by critical or chronic illness. This includes our successful “Farm to Fork” program that offers free shares of local produce from farm partners coupled with on-site nutrition education in our Nutrition Classroom.  


“Food Is Medicine” Food & Health Policy Initiative

  • The results of our research project evaluating the impact of our meals on health and healthcare costs was recently published in Health Affairs. This study, undertaken in partnership with Massachusetts General Hospital, showed across the board reductions in “big ticket” items –including hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and ambulance services resulting in a 16% average net reduction in healthcare costs. This study was featured in a May 2018 Food is Medicine Congressional Briefing on Capitol Hill.
  • We have completed the first year of our three-year research study, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Community Servings is just one of 22 grantees nationwide.
  • We have research and food and health policy partnerships with MA General Hospital, the Nonprofit Finance Fund, and the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School. We are also a founding member of both the Food is Medicine Coalition, a partnership of 17 sister agencies and the national Root Cause Coalition, focused on social determinants of health. In partnership with the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School and the BCBSMA Foundation, we are leading the development of the nation's first Food is Medicine State Plan, which we expect to be released in early 2019. This plan will assess existing Food is Medicine interventions and set forth policy recommendations that will advance access for intrastate interventions.  
  • We also presented our nutrition model at several national conferences including: 2017 Society of General Internal Medicine annual conference in Washington D.C., 2017 Root Cause Coalition and 2017 Putting Care at the Center conference, the annual conference of the National Center for Complex Health and Social Needs.
  • In October 2017, we co-hosted our fifth “Food Is Medicine” Symposium with Harvard Law School’s Center for Health with over 150 attendees.


Teaching Kitchen Food-Service Job Training Program

  • Over the past year we have received 80 applications for 40 trainee spots. We accepted 44 and of those 37 enrolled and 24 (65%) graduated. Nineteen (19) trainees elected to take the MA ServSafe exam, 15 (79%) passed this exam.
  • 87% of placed graduates have retained their job for 30 days or more.
  • Among our trainees 100% were unemployed/underemployed, 100% were low-income, 62% were from communities of color, 59% were ex-offenders, 41% were women and 65% were homeless. Over the past two years, we have experienced a significant increase in trainees with multiple major barriers to employment.
  • This year we worked closely with 45 different referral partners who referred potential trainees to our program, including The Work Place, JobNet, and Career Link. Other referral partners include: Access to Recovery, Boston Juvenile Re-Entry Initiative at Roxbury Youthworks, Youth Build, Youth Options Unlimited (YOU), Suffolk County Department of Corrections.
  • We maintained relationships with 100 employment partners including hotels, hospitals, restaurants and smaller food-service facilities such as residential programs.

“Food Campus” Capital Expansion Project

  • We are in the process of building and renovating our 31,000 square foot “Food Campus” which will nearly triple our capacity to produce 1.5M medically tailored meals annually.
  • We have raised $9.8M toward our $12M “Food is the Foundation” capital campaign goal to-date.


Challenges We are actively engaged in building investment in our capital expansion project to create a 31,000 square foot "Food Campus" that will enable us to triple our capacity. The urgency for this capital expansion cannot be understated. Today, we have a waiting list of 150 individuals who have been medically certified as needing our medically tailored nutrition program. Our kitchen is operating at maximum designed capacity and we simply do not have enough slots to start clients who are in need upon referral. Clients are prioritized based on a framework of illness severity and isolation and many are on our waitlist for three to six months before starting our meals. For these sick and nutritionally vulnerable clients and their families, this waiting period is extremely difficult and often detrimental to their ability to manage their illness. 

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

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Organization Information

Community Servings

Location: Boston, MA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Tobin Scipione
Jamaica Plain, MA United States
$3,746 raised of $50,000 goal
 
47 donations
$46,254 to go
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