Beach Cities Health District Helping Community With $25k Grant to Meals on Wheels, New Assistance Fund and Tips to Help During Coronavirus Emergency
Friday, March 20, 2020

County and State Orders Increase Social Distancing Restrictions

REDONDO BEACH, Calif. (March 20, 2020) – In response to the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) and orders from the State of California and Los Angeles County, Beach Cities Health District (BCHD) is taking multiple steps to assist the community during the COVID-19 health emergency.

BCHD CEO Tom Bakaly announced a $25,000 grant by the public agency to the Salvation Army Redondo Beach Corps’ Meals on Wheels program, which has seen a surge in requests from older adults since the coronavirus outbreak began. This money is in addition to a $55,000 non-profit grant the program already receives from BCHD. 

“Many members of our community are in self-isolation and unable to safely leave their home to buy essentials,” said Bakaly. “We have received many more calls asking for assistance since the outbreak started and the Salvation Army has also been inundated with calls for help. We’re also working with Meals on Wheels to recruit volunteer drivers to meet this growing need.”

The donation to Meals on Wheels is just part of the emergency response by BCHD to assist the community. Bakaly also announced the creation of the “Beach Cities COVID-19 Fund” to assist older adults and adults with underlying health conditions in need in Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach. The fund also provides an outlet for people looking to help their community during this health situation.

“Just as we help older adults each December with our Holiday Gift Bag program, this fund is another way for neighbors to help neighbors here in the Beach Cities,” Bakaly said.

The Beach Cities COVID-19 Fund is accepting tax-deductible monetary donations from the community to help provide vulnerable adults who are income-qualified with essentials like groceries and household and cleaning supplies. Donors can visit bchd.org/coronavirus to contribute. People wishing to submit donations by check can mail those to Beach Cities COVID-19 Fund, 1200 Del Amo Street, Redondo Beach, CA 90277.

In addition to actively working with partners to create a COVID-19 testing site in the Beach Cities as L.A. County increases its capacity for testing, BCHD is offering health and well-being tools and tips as the community is working to stay connected while maintaining “social distancing.”

The L.A. County Department of Public Health declared a “Safer at Home” order on March 19, increasing its call for social distancing by prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people, ordering nonessential businesses to close and instructing residents to remain home as much as possible.  Business that are permitted to stay open are required to enforce social distancing regulations.

Governor Gavin Newsom then issued a statewide “Stay at Home” order, restricting California residents to stay at home unless they were visiting grocery stores, convenience stores, take-out or delivery restaurants, gas stations, medical facilities, pharmacies, banks, laundromats or helping a relative.

Certain essential workers are exempted from the Stay at Home order.

Among the ways a community can stay connected are: Call your neighbors, send a text message to your loved ones – make a commitment to each other to check in and keep a positive attitude as much as possible. Here are more ways residents can support at-risk older adults in their area:

  • Taking out and picking up trash cans
  • Shopping or running errands
  • Bring meals or schedule meal delivery
  • Picking up prescriptions or over the counter supplies
  • Walking the dog(s)
  • Moving the car for parking purposes
  • Dropping off or picking up letters or packages at the post office
  • Sending a care package
  • Bringing the mail or newspaper to the front porch
  • Calling to let them know you are thinking about them. If they are willing, commit to calling each other a couple of times a week to check in and stay connected.

“Now more than ever is the time to support our community and support one another,” said Dr. William Kim, BCHD’s Chief Medical Officer. “In doing so, we urge people to follow the recommendation of social distancing for your health and the health of the person you’re trying to help.”

When helping neighbors, such as dropping off groceries and supplies, Kim and BCHD recommend good Samaritans follow these best practices for the health and safety of yourself and our community:

  • Ring the doorbell or knock on the door
  • Place items on the doorstep
  • Step six feet away from the door
  • Wait for the neighbor to open the door
  • Wave, say hello and ask them how they’re doing!
  • If they express needing additional help, you may suggest they call the BCHD Assistance, Information & Referrals line at 310-374-3426, ext. 256 (available every day, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.)
  • After you leave, wash your hands or use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol

BCHD will continue to provide services to older adults and adults with disabilities in the community while taking precautions to ensure staff and volunteers follow LACDPH recommendations to protect themselves and others from respiratory infections like COVID-19 or the flu.

Visit bchd.org/coronavirus for information about COVID-19 or to sign up for BCHD email updates, and  bchd.org/resources offers information related to mental health and social-emotional health for youth and adults, support groups and emergency services. 

Assistance, Health-related information and referrals for Older Adults and Adults with Disabilities:
During this time of heightened health concern, BCHD is available to offer help and support. If you are an older adult resident or an adult with disabilities (or if you know one) in the Beach Cities in need of assistance, or if you have resident questions or concerns, please reach out to our information and referral line at 310-374-3426, ext. 256 (now available seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.) or make an online request at bchd.org/coronavirus.

Download the Press Release Here

For more information about COVID-19 visit:
Los Angeles County Department of Public Health: http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/
World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus