How You Can Lend a (Gloved) Hand During Hard Times
If you are in need of assistance, or looking for ways to help here is a list of resources for you!
The quarantine, shut down of non-essential business, and economic movement is like nothing our generation has ever seen. Many will find themselves unexpectedly in need, and those who were already experiencing hardship will have even more difficulty. While it’s hard to even ask for people to dig even deeper in to their pockets during a time like this we felt it was important to give our readers a round up of places that are helping those in need, and the purpose is two-fold: perhaps you are newly in need of help and didn’t know where to turn, or perhaps you find that you are able to spare a donation to one of these places at this time. Any amount helps, and we are confident these organizations are spreading their fundraising dollars out as best they can to make as big of an impact as possible.
The Ardmore Food Pantry hours are Monday 10 am – 12 pm, and 6:30 – 1:30 pm. All residents of Lower Merion are welcome, and financial donations are needed.
The Chester County Food Bank provides an essential service to the community and will continue to do so taking the recommended COVID-19 precautionary measures for the health and safety of their staff, volunteers, partners, and the community. Please visit their site to find out how you can donate, volunteer, or receive food.
Staff at Daemion Counseling Center in Berwyn are checking voicemails remotely, and will respond within 24 hours to schedule clients (new and current) with a therapist, send documents needed for appointments, and allow the client to choose how they’d like to schedule their appointment. They can do Zoom, Skype, FaceTime, or telephone, and are offering online payment options (checks may be sent to the office).
Email communication from the Superintendent of Tredyffrin/Easttown School District has indicated that FLITE will provide assistance to families in need of the school supplies necessary to complete the work from home assignments. FLITE’s overall purpose is to help assure the continuation of educational excellence for all public school children in the district.
During the current Coronavirus situation the Food Closet (located in Paoli) is continuing to operate with adjusted procedures, including having a drive-through service. They provide food on the first and third Thursday of each month during the mornings (9 – 11 am) and the second and fourth Thursday of each month in the evening (5 – 7 pm).
Lower Merion School District: Nutritional Services
UPDATED INFORMATION AS OF 3/23
Starting March 23, 2020 the Suburban Square meal distribution site will be open on Mondays and Wednesdays ONLY from 11 am – 1 pm. Children will still be able to receive 10 meals per week. Here is how it will work: on Monday families will receive Monday lunch, Tuesday breakfast and lunch, and Wednesday breakfast; on Wednesday families will receive Wednesday lunch, Thursday breakfast and lunch, Friday breakfast and lunch, and Monday breakfast. The pickup location is the parking lot at Montgomery and Anderson Avenues, across from the former Ruby’s Diner location.
MANNA is an essential service provider that is currently open and continuing meal delivery service to their clients. Their staff is producing meals to be delivered, and clients are receiving one week’s worth of shelf-stable meals in addition to their normal delivery. They are minimizing person-to-person contact for their clients to keep them safe during meal delivery. You can donate or learn more about how to get help on their site.
Media Food Bank
The Media Food Bank is in need of non-perishable food donations, as well as clean cardboard boxes to distribute food, and cash donations. They are updating their Facebook page with info about frequently asked questions, and if you want to make a cash donation online you can visit the First United Methodist Church’s giving site and be sure to select “Food Bank” in the drop down menu.
If you live in Montgomery County and meet the income guidelines you will be eligible for an emergency food package that will feed you an your family for an average of three days. There are 26 food cupboards, 7 soup kitchens, and 3 shelters in their network.
Narberth Community Food Bank has shared that food banks and soup kitchens are considered essential services and they will remain open. They are expecting an increase in need due to filling the meal gaps facing Narberth and Lower Merion Township residents due to the closing of area schools and senior day centers. You can donate food, volunteer, or send a financial donation.
PACS is open and commited to remaining open and distributing food for those in need. They have implemented additional, stringent safety steps for their staff and volunteers to promote safe food handling. With the closure of schools there is now an increase in demand for food so please consider donating.
This food cupboard located in Norristown, as well as providing delivery service, will continue to operate during their regular hours as of March 15. Clients will be served outdoors with every perishable and non-perishable item included in each package.
All SNAP Pizza locations are offering a free kids pizza and fountain drink (maximum two meals per transaction) Monday through Friday.
Surrey Services has locations in Devon, Broomall, East Goshen, Havertown, and Media. Currently all centers are closed but all in-home meal services will continue, including Meals on Wheels, as well as essential transportation and home care services. Limited grab and go lunches are available in Media, Havertown, and Devon on a reservation basis. Please donate if you can to ensure this at risk population receives continued home care and meal service!
T&E Care’s mission is to maintain a network of people providing financial and other material assistance to persons in need in and around the Tredyffrin and Easttown township area. T&E Care expects an increase in the number of requests from neighbors to help with bills and food at this time. They are accepting cash donations to provide assistance with bills, as well as gift cards to grocery stores. They accept cash donations via Venmo, PayPal, or mailed check.
TESD has begun delivering meals to students participating in the free and reduced price meal program. They understand that families who are not participating in the free and reduced price meal plan may still experience food scarcity or other needs. If your family is in need of support, or if you are interested in contributing to families in need, you may confidentially contact Dr. Oscar Torres at TorresO@tesd.net or Mrs. Jeanne Braun at BraunJ@tesd.net. They are aware that access to technology and school supplies may pose challenges for some students. FLITE has generously offered to provide funds to address these needs. If your family is in need of technology support, you may confidentially contact Dr. Mike Szymendera at (610) 240-1922 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If your family is in need of support with school supplies, you may confidentially contact Mrs. Jeanne Braun at (610) 240-1913 or BraunJ@tesd.net.
Due to the increase in demand because of school closures the Upper Merion Community Cupboard is in desperate need of many items (listed on their homepage). They are open during their regular hours but will be providing food in pre-packged bags and loading them in to cars in the parking lot to protect shoppers and volunteers. You may send them an email if you do not have transportation, or if you are concerned you may be contagious or have been exposed to set up doorstep food delivery.
SNAP provides nutrition benefits to supplement the food budget of needy families so they can purchase healthy food and more towards self-sufficiency.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides federal grants to states for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non breastfeeding pospartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk.
Serving Radnor Township and other area residents, people in need are welcome to pick up a bag of food- no questions asked. Pantry hours for pick up are Wednesday and Thursday 9 am – 1 pm. There is a collection box near the office in the back of the church for food donations during regular office hours Monday – Thursday 8:30 am – 3 pm, and Friday 8:30 am – 12 pm.
The West Chester Food Cupboard always welcomes donations but especially at an unprecedented time like this. Checks and gift cards for ShopRite or Giant can be amiled, and online donations are easy to make.