BROOKLINE – The Brookline Senior Center and its partner agencies have launched a fundraising drive to continue a popular program that supports both residents facing food insecurity and Brookline restaurants.
The Restaurants for Brookline program was launched on March 30, through a state earmark of $60,000 to the Brookline Chamber of Commerce. The funding has supported 11 Brookline restaurants, who prepare 50 meals per week for Senior Center recipients and 400 for Brookline Food Pantry recipients.
That funding has ended. The Senior Center, Chamber of Commerce and Food Pantry hope to raise $60,000 by May 31 to continue the program.
“The number of Brookline families facing food insecurity has tripled to 650 to 700 since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Senior Center Director Ruthann Dobek said. “Simultaneously, Brookline restaurants are operating under strict restraints and can no longer count on formerly reliable revenue sources. The funding obtained by Sen. Cynthia Creem has been vital, and we are hoping this successful program can continue.”
The Senior Center has been able to provide meals to 130 older adults. The meals have received rave reviews, including the following from a 95-year-old resident:
“It is wonderful the restaurants are being so generous. It has been a very hard year and I haven’t been able to go out and get any kind of restaurant food. This was a ‘little ray of sunshine’ in my life and I really appreciate it. I really hope the program can succeed for the future.”
Participating restaurants are Bar Cino, Curry House, Grainne O’Malley’s, Jin’s Fine Asian Cuisine Sushi Bar, Pon Thai Bistro, La Morra, Livite, Michael’s Deli, Paris Creperie, Pho Lemongrass, and Zaftigs.
The Restaurants for Brookline program has been well-received by both residents and restaurant owners since its launch.
“This program is a win-win in providing food to those in need and helping our local businesses,” Dobek said. “Any donation in any amount strengthens Brookline families and neighborhoods.”
For more information about Restaurants for Brookline, or to donate, visit here