FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 3, 2016
(202) 269-6875 or
November 3, 2016—Today, Food & Friends reached
a new milestone—serving its 20 millionth home delivered meal to a client
battling a serious disease. Started in 1988, the nutrition services
organization delivers free, medically-specialized meals and groceries to DC
area residents living with HIV/AIDS, cancer or other serious illnesses.
has changed at Food & Friends over the years – we’ve expanded services,
grown into new facilities, evolved our menu – but the personal impact of
serving a meal to a neighbor remains a cornerstone of our work. It’s a communal
act that, no matter how many times you do it, never fades in its importance,”
said Craig Shniderman, Executive Director of Food & Friends.
early days of Food & Friends, during the height of the AIDS crisis, the
organization focused on providing compassion and calories to community members
living with AIDS, often ostracized and nearing the end of their lives. Today, the
organization also responds to the needs of adults and children living with
cancer and other serious illnesses. The meals take into account a broader range
of dietary needs resulting from a client’s illness or treatments and unique
combination of health considerations.
clients’ needs often look different than in the past. They still have an acute
need for our service, but also have complex additional health issues. For
instance, we know that folks with HIV are also at greater risk for heart
failure and diabetes than the general population. Over the course of 20 million
meals, our food has come a long way in addressing that complexity,” said Carrie
Stoltzfus, Director of Program Services.
meals Food & Friends provide to its clients are not only essential
nourishment, but are carefully developed based on current research to improve
health outcomes and overall wellbeing. For example, Food & Friends features pureed
or soft meal plans to help those with difficulty chewing or swallowing, and can
also address a client’s broader health needs with diabetic, renal, or heart
healthy meal plans.
& Friends’ staff of registered dietitians and trained chefs have worked
together closely over the years to shift our meals and grocery programs toward
what’s commonly known as a Mediterranean Diet, focusing on fresh vegetables,
whole grains, healthy oils, and lean meats and seafood.
this shift incurs higher costs and more prep time in the kitchen, the benefits
to our clients are undeniable,” said Food & Friends Executive Chef Mark
Locraft. “We’re committed to cooking more healthy and tailored food for our
clients to ensure their greatest chances for a long and healthful life.”
million meals prepared by Food & Friends have been possible through the
work of tens of thousands of dedicated members of the community. The
organization is sincerely grateful to its volunteers, donors and community
supporters whose generosity makes its work possible.
ABOUT FOOD & FRIENDS: Food & Friends is a Washington, D.C.-based
nonprofit organization that provides home-delivered, specialized meals and
nutrition counseling to people living with HIV/AIDS, cancer and other
life-challenging illnesses. Food & Friends’ services are free-of-charge to
recipients who qualify solely based on their health status and nutritional
need. Monday-Saturday, including holidays, staff and volunteers deliver to
5,300 square miles including the District of Columbia, seven counties in
Maryland, and seven counties and six independent cities in Virginia. Since
1988, Food & Friends has delivered more than 19 million meals to 28,700
individuals. For more information, please visit www.foodandfriends.org, Facebook (/foodandfriends), Twitter (@foodandfriends) or Instagram (@foodandfriendsdc).