Second Harvest Food Bank is receiving a Feeding America grant to combat senior hunger in Santa Cruz County. Second Harvest and Grey Bears are partnering together to utilize these funds to increase capacity in reaching seniors in Santa Cruz County in need of healthy food.
Prior to the pandemic when things were a bit more “normal” I had the opportunity to visit Grey Bears and watch their volunteers in action. Like a well oiled machine they packed bags, lined up cars, and took off to provide healthy food to seniors in our community. It was a great experience. You can read more about that here.
The Grey Bears Healthy Food program is a weekly delivery of fresh vegetables, fruits, and healthy staples to 4,300 Santa Cruz County seniors – including 1,300 who are homebound. The increased services through this program include new delivery routes in areas of geographic isolation, including San Lorenzo Valley, North Coast/Bonny Doon(where 900+ homes were lost in the summer wildfires), outlying areas of the Santa Cruz Mountains and South County.
Grey Bears also annually provides 36,000 hot, healthy meals, served and delivered from their kitchen, including to in-home-supported-services seniors evacuated to local hotels during/after the CZU Complex fire. Grey Bears is projecting they will prepare and deliver 2,250 additional hot meals through this program expansion.
For more information on the Grey Bears organization and all the services they provide visit them online or call 831-479-1055.
Pictured above (from 2019): Two local volunteers at the Grey Bear facilities in Santa Cruz sorting and packaging healthy food for delivery to local seniors.