July 29, 2015

Citymeals partners with the New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA) to provide a vital service to our homebound elderly across all five boroughs. Together we ensure that each and every day a nutritious meal is delivered directly to their front doors.

But the number of people 60 and older living in the city is climbing faster than any other segment of the population. This trend is expected to continue as the number of New Yorkers aged 65 and up is projected to reach 1.35 million by 2030. In addition, older New Yorkers increasingly face the problem of food insecurity, with ten percent now lacking reliable access to affordable, healthy food.

To answer this growing need, Citymeals and DFTA will add 900 of the city’s frail aged to our regular meal deliveries during the coming year. This will bring the total we nourish to 19,000.

The city has already agreed to fund the additional weekday meals. But it is Citymeals, not the city, who guarantees our homebound elderly neighbors will have meals for weekends, holidays and emergencies.

In early June, longtime Board Member Kathleen Turner, along with our Executive Director Beth Shapiro, petitioned members of the City Council for new funding to support our increased enrollment. The amount approved will allow us to prepare and deliver nearly 100,000 more meals over the next year. We are grateful for the Council’s assistance and particularly thank Council Member and Aging Committee Chair Margaret Chin, as well as Council Members Julissa Ferreras, Helen Rosenthal, Ben Kallos and Dan Garodnick for their advocacy on behalf of their most vulnerable neighbors.

A full year of weekend, holiday and emergency meals for one frail aged New Yorker costs only $894. That is less than $2.50 a day to ensure a continuous lifeline of nutritious food and human companionship for those we serve. As we anticipate adding 100 new meal recipients to our deliveries by Labor Day, we have launched a campaign to raise $89,400 by the end of August – providing them with the security of nourishing meals, warm visits and peace of mind for an entire year.