Innovative Approach Will Be Offered as a Model for Other Food Banks Nationwide
(DAYTON, Ohio – March 11, 2020) Today CareSource and The Foodbank, Inc. are announcing a first-of-its-kind approach in preparing for the potential need to provide food for seniors who might be quarantined as a result of the coronavirus.
CareSource has committed up to $128,000 in funding to allow The Foodbank, Inc. to prepare 1,200 supplemental food boxes to be distributed to seniors who live with an income below 200% of the poverty line. Each home will be provided with a 14-day supply of food, covering three nutritious meals per day for a total of 50,400 meals.
It is important to get ahead of any confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Miami Valley so The Foodbank, Inc. is quickly working to purchase and prepare food boxes with the goal of distributing boxes directly to seniors, prior to any confirmed local cases, thereby reducing the possibility of unknowingly spreading the virus.
“CareSource has been a long-time supporter of The Foodbank, Inc. and we are incredibly grateful for their partnership. When this urgent need came up, they were the first corporate partner that came to mind and within 24 hours they said yes to our request in order to make sure the Dayton community is prepared,” said Michelle Riley, Chief Executive Officer, The Foodbank, Inc.
Nearly 1 in 6 seniors in America face the threat of hunger. Locally, in the month of February, The Foodbank, Inc. served 1,107 senior clients through the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) in Montgomery and Greene counties. These same seniors are most at risk for fatalities related to the COVID-19 virus. CareSource, much like The Foodbank, Inc., is committed to making a lasting difference in the life of its members by improving their health and well-being.
“These are unprecedented times in our communities as we work to reduce the spread of coronavirus. Seniors are particularly at risk, so this innovative program will help protect this vulnerable population who may not be in a position to leave their homes at this time,” said Stephen Ringel, Ohio Market President, CareSource. “At CareSource we know that access to health care is just one piece of the puzzle for healthy living. That is why we continue to invest and innovate in social determinants of health, including access to food.”
Providing 14 days of food will reduce the need for seniors to leave their homes, thereby reducing risk of exposure to the virus. Older Americans are at risk for a variety of chronic health conditions. Nutritious food, supplied through these supplemental emergency food boxes, is critical during this period of potential exposure and isolation.
“There are many organizations across the country working to develop an approach to this issue. The partnership between CareSource and The Foodbank, Inc. in Dayton, Ohio is a shining example of innovation to ensure vulnerable neighbors have the food and supplies they need to feel safe and secure during these uncertain times,” said Kathryn Strickland, Chief Network Officer, Feeding America.
CareSource is a nonprofit nationally recognized as an industry leader in providing member-centric health care coverage. Founded in 1989, CareSource administers one of the nation’s largest Medicaid managed care plans. Today, CareSource offers individuals and families comprehensive health and life services including Marketplace and Medicare Advantage plans.
Headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, CareSource serves nearly 2 million members in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, West Virginia and Georgia. CareSource understands the challenges consumers face navigating the health system and works to put health care in reach for those it serves.
For more, visit www.caresource.com, follow @caresource on Twitter or like CareSource on Facebook.
About The Foodbank, Inc.
The Foodbank, Inc. relieves hunger in the community through a network of partner agencies by acquiring and distributing food. Food and related supplies are distributed to a network of pantries, community kitchens, shelters and other charitable programs, all of which support the health and development of food insecure individuals in the Miami Valley. Through our over 100 member agencies, The Foodbank, Inc. distributed over 16 million pounds of food last year. There are 116,720 food insecure individuals in our area