Project Angel Food joined the Biden-Harris Presidential Inaugural Committee for the National Day of Service on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, January 18 with “Project Angel Food’s Dialing for the Dream,” a virtual event. Dialing for the Dream connected volunteers with critically ill Project Angel Food clients, with calls of well wishes and encouragement.
Moderated by Rachel Lindsay(Bachelorette); Jonathan Del Arco (The Closer, Star Trek), Alison Pill (Star Trek: Picard, The Newsroom), Gates McFadden (Star Trek), Lauren Tom (Friends), Peter Porte (Hallmark films), Arjan Timmermans(Apple) joined Project Angel Food Executive Director, Richard Ayoub for the virtual event involving dozens of volunteers who registered through the official Presidential Inaugural Committee’s National Day of Service site. Celebrities and volunteers joined via Zoom, and muted while each called 8-10Project Angel Food clients over the course of an hour from 10 a.m. to 11a.m. PST.
Project Angel Food prepares and delivers life-saving meals to 2,400 critically ill people per day, discovering that because of the pandemic, clients are experiencing feelings of isolation and anxiety more today than ever. For this reason, Project Angel Food has launched The Everest Foundation’s Telephone Angels program, sponsored by The Everest Foundation. Trained volunteers to check in with clients a few times a week over the course of a year, Dialing for The Dream is a mini version of this program focusing on kindness, connection and community.
“What a great way to officially way to launch our Everest Foundation Telephone Angels Program,” says Ayoub. “Could you imagine how it would feel to get a call from someone saying they care about you, that you matter? We piloted this program over the past six months, and 90%of clients participating report feeling better after each call.”
Rachel Lindsay, who as “Call Captain,” moderated the virtual event said, “It is such an honor to be involved and to further Dr. King’s dream of equality. Seventy-Three percent of Project Angel Food’s clients are people of color which reflects the racial disparity of healthcare in this country and Project Angel Food’s determination to bridge that gap. Today, reaching out to Project Angel Food clients demonstrates the compassion in action that keeps King’s dream alive.”
Jonathan Del Arco, who is an official surrogate of the Biden Presidential Inaugural Committee’s National Day of Service said, “Today as we launch Inauguration week with a day of service, I can’t think of a better organization that embodies what Joe Biden and Kamala Harris campaigned on ‘to restore the soul of America’ than Project Angel Food. I have volunteered in the Project Angel Food kitchen and I can attest that the organization not only feeds the bodies of those who are critically ill and homebound but also their souls.”
Project Angel Food has delivered over one million meals this year, to a client population mirrors L.A.’s diversity: 34.8%Latino, 28.1% African-American, 25.5% Caucasian, 6.9% Asian/Pacific Islander,0.7% Native American, 4.1% other. Clients are 39% female, 60% male, and 1%transgender; 78% live at or below the Federal Poverty Level, with 97% below200% of the Federal Poverty Level. Over 75% cannot afford the cost of both food and rent, and, as their only source of food, we stand between them and homelessness. They live with HIV/AIDS, Cancer, Congestive Heart Failure, CVA-stroke, Alzheimer’s, COPD-emphysema, severe Diabetes, and End Stage Renal Disease.
To sign-up for The Everest Foundation’s Telephone Angels, people can visit angelfood.org/volunteer.