Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio provides 7,500 emergency food boxes to seniors in need

Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio (COA) is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for older adults and people with disabilities while providing support to their families and caregivers.

With core service areas in Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton, and Warren counties, COA is part of the national aging service network and is a state designated Area Agency on Aging.

Annually, COA serves more than 26,000 vulnerable older adults and people with disabilities in our region. During the COVID-19 pandemic, COA is working to ensure the health and safety of their clients, as well as meet the needs of individuals who have never needed assistance before.

Many seniors, named to be the most at risk, were afraid or unable to leave their homes to shop for groceries and other essential supplies.

The support provided from the COVID-19 Relief Fund allowed COA to provide assurance to area seniors that their needs would not go unmet, particularly when it came to food. Through their provider network, COA delivered more than 7,500 emergency food boxes to those who would typically receive home delivered meals. Each box contained a 14-day supply of shelf stable meals to be set aside in the case that a regular meal delivery was disrupted due to the virus outbreak. This amounted to more than 105,000 meals for seniors.

The COVID-19 Relief Fund also enabled COA to provide food and other essential supplies to seniors who weren’t enrolled in their programs but needed immediate support as a direct result of the pandemic.

“This is an extraordinary time for everyone, but seniors are particularly at risk. Our staff and provider networks are working hard to serve not only our existing clients, but also others in our community who now find themselves in need,” says Suzanne Burke, Council on Aging CEO.

“We could not do this without community support and the response has been tremendous. I’ve lived in Cincinnati all my life. I know what a great community this is, and they certainly haven’t failed seniors during this critical time.”

With nearly 183,000 people age 65 and older living in our region, it is important to know that just one call to COA can link those in need to resources in their area. Seniors who need help during this time should contact COA at 513-721-1025 or visit www.help4seniors.org.

The COVID-19 Regional Response Fund has distributed more than $7 million into the community to support residents who are most disproportionately affected by — and most vulnerable to — the health, economic, education, housing, and social impacts of the crisis.
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