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COVID-19 Grant Program Delivers Restaurant Meals to City Seniors

Staff reports

Seniors in the city who have had a hard time getting food during the COVID-19 pandemic can receive up to three free restaurant meals a week delivered to their door.

The city is partnering with 20 restaurants across all quadrants and downtown to help older residents as well as to provide business for the restaurants.

“The coronavirus pandemic is a healthcare crisis that created an economic crisis and we are ready to do all we can to confront those challenges,” Mayor Lovely Warren wrote in a news release announcing the program. “These grants will help small, local restaurants maintain a presence in our neighborhoods while also supporting residents who are vulnerable to the dangers of social isolation. Programs like this help us create more jobs, safer and more vibrant neighborhoods and better educational opportunities.”

Deloris Hamilton, who owns D&L Tropical Sensations (D&L Groceries) on Genesee Street is among the participating restaurants.

“I think it’s very important for the senior citizens so they can get some healthy food during this time when they can’t get out,” she said. “It will help me pay my bills. It will be good for all of us that are participating.”

Orders can be placed starting Aug. 3 for delivery beginning the week of Aug. 10. Seniors can receive meals for up to three months.

The Department of Neighborhood and Business Development awarded each restaurant with a grant of up to $15,000 to prepare free meals for delivery.

The city contracted with Goodwill of the Finger Lakes 211/LIFE LINE Mission program to handle arrangements for enrollment and delivery. Residents must be 60 or older, live in the city and not have their own transportation.

Rochester seniors need to call 211 (or text 898-211) 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to register. Seven days advance notice is required for orders. Seniors can place one month of orders per call.

Participating restaurants are:

  • Ludwig’s Center Stage Café, 25 Gibbs St.;
  • Munchie’s ROC City Empanadas, 154 N. Clinton Ave.;
  • Allegiant Restaurant, 801 S. Plymouth Ave.;
  • The Acorn Exchange, 75 S. Clinton Ave.;
  • India House Restaurant, 998 S. Clinton Ave.;
  • Lorraine’s Food Factory, 777 Culver Rd.;
  • Neno’s Gourmet Mexican Street Food, 642 Monroe Ave.;
  • Marty’s On Park, 703 Park Ave.;
  • Caribbean Heritage Restaurant, 719 S. Plymouth Ave.;
  • D&L Tropical Sensations, 1005 Genesee St.;
  • ‘Unkl Moe’s BBQ and Catering, 493 West Ave.;
  • Arnett Café, 332 Arnett Blvd.;
  • Borinquen Bakery and Restaurant, 1195 N. Clinton Ave.;
  • El Pilon Criollo, 973 N. Clinton Ave.;
  • Tricia’s Kitchen, 1014 Hudson Ave.;
  • Nin’s Restaurant, 1049 Hudson Ave.;
  • Taste of Bahamas, 4705 Lake Ave.;
  • Kandis Food and Drink, 701 Lake Ave.;
  • El Sazón Restaurant, 144 Lyell Ave.;
  • El Divino Restaurant, 1149 Lyell Ave.

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided funding for the restaurants, which were selected through a competitive proposal process.