As seniors have relied on the Foundation more than ever during the pandemic, vital services have continued to be provided. The Carmel Foundation reinvented its offerings and found new ways to serve as a valuable resource for basic needs, like food and shelter. Because their campus was closed, they reinvented their onsite lunch program by creating a new Curbside To Go meal program. This ensured that affordable food could still be easily and safely accessible so that this particularly vulnerable population could continue to receive nutritious meals. Since this new program began, The Carmel Foundation has served an average of 949 meals per month.
The Foundation also expanded their meal delivery program to include those that are particularly susceptible. Both the number of recipients as well as the number of meals each could order increased, providing another layer of defense by having healthy meals delivered directly to one’s door. Recently they also expanded their geographic reach to include Seaside and Marina.
In addition to providing for basic needs, the Foundation has helped with the overall health and wellbeing of those they serve. The staff called each of their more than 3,400 members offering options to relieve the social isolation associated with the pandemic, and the Foundation’s support services department has provided assistance to an average of 200 people per month. Almost 100 one-on-one appointments were held between a tech instructor and a senior so those isolated could learn to use technology, like FaceTime and Zoom, to keep connected with friends and family. In March, 2021 The Carmel Foundation, in partnership with the VNA, held a vaccine clinic where 371 of our community’s seniors received the COVID vaccine.
Voted “Best Hangout for Seniors” for 19 years in a row, The Carmel Foundation is a wonderful place to spend time. Prior to the pandemic, the Foundation offered 60+ classes and activities to keep people mentally and physically engaged, as well as provided an opportunity for people to connect with others. While the campus is currently closed, however, more than 60% of the classes are still meeting either via Zoom or socially-distanced offsite. Zoom happy hours, a virtual “Artist of the Month” display, and filmed presentations and performances are currently available for members.
Looking forward, the Foundation will use a tiered approach when safe to fully re-open their doors, always considering the wellbeing of the population they serve. As they do not accept government grants, the Foundation is grateful for the outpouring of support received during these unprecedented times from individuals, businesses, foundations, and events like Concours on the Avenue, where the Foundation is the nonprofit beneficiary.
In April 2021, the Foundation celebrated its 71st birthday. They look forward to celebrating many more birthdays to come.
About The Carmel Foundation
The Carmel Foundation is an organization that serves members 55 and better in the Monterey County area and beyond. The Foundation is located in Carmel on the southeast Corner of 8th and Lincoln.