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Ready for action, GCCS kitchen manager Kim Sewell
and volunteer Meals on Wheels driver Everette
Burkard get the Senior Grocery Bags ready for
distribution to homebound seniors.
Photo by Cynthia Martin

March 15, 2020 – Nevada County has the fourth largest senior population per capita in California, and food insecurity is an ever-growing problem. The newly launched Senior Grocery Bag program offers a significant improvement.

“Many older people simply do not have access to food resources,” said Gold Country Community Services executive director Janeth Marroletti. “As our elderly population increases, the situation has become dire. For example, our Meals on Wheels Program, which has provided home-delivered meals to homebound seniors since 1976, currently has a wait list of 98.”

Recently, Gold Country Community Services, in collaboration with Interfaith Food Ministry, the Food Bank of Nevada County and Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital’s Food and Nutrition Services Department, were awarded a grant by Dignity Health to offer additional food resources to homebound seniors.

“Dignity Health’s financial support will enable these four agencies to provide a total of 300 local seniors with a small bag of food once a month for one full year,” Marroletti explained. “Now each agency will have increased resources and staff time to reach out to more elderly people, and we greatly appreciate Dignity Health making these food resources available.”

Interfaith Food Ministry, Executive Director Phil Alonso said, “This project is a great example of what can be achieved when agencies join forces to support the community. Last year IFM served 8,000 individuals, and 25% were seniors.”

Food Bank of Nevada County executive director Nicole McNeely added, “Our Food Bank mission is to procure nutritious food and distribute it to individuals and families in need. Meeting the needs of our county includes taking food to those who can’t get to us, such as homebound seniors.”

The program, in its test phase, is at full capacity. Therefore, no further applications can be accepted. However, those interested in learning more about food insecurity among the elderly in Nevada County should contact Gold Country Community Services at info@goldcountryservices.org or phone (530) 615-4541. Tax deductible donations can be made at www.goldcountryservices.org, and volunteer Meals on Wheels drivers are always welcome.