On Friday, January 15, before heading to Dodger Stadium to join Governor Newsom to tour and the newly designed mass COVID-19 vaccination site and hold a press conference; L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti had something else he wanted to do first - make deliveries for Project Angel Food.
So, Mayor Garcetti joined me to distribute meals to several Project Angel Food clients in Boyle Heights, just a few blocks from where he grew up.
In 2020, the Mayor’s office deemed Project Angel Food an essential service because of the work we do caring for the most vulnerable in Los Angeles, delivering medically tailored meals to people already living with critical illness. Pre-pandemic, we served 1,500 people per day; today that number is over 2,300 - from 600,000 meals a year to over a million. The Mayor has noticed, asking me to thank all our team at Project Angel Food for their nonstop dedication. He said over and over how important our work is to the city and the Angelenos, and he wanted to pitch in and help.
Meeting several of our clients, Mayor Garcetti, was inspired by their courage and hope. He got to hear firsthand how Project Angel Food has literally saved their lives. In return, our beautiful clients were touched by the Mayor’s earnestness, compassion, and desire to really listen and hear their stories - in both English and Spanish. Our client, Juana, who has cancer, was so surprised with his fluency and the fact that he spoke to her in Spanish at all that she was moved to tears.
Clients received their meals from Mayor Garcetti, shared stories, family photos, and one even gave him an assignment - fix the parking in her neighborhood! He listened intently, walked to the street to assess the situation, and then asked an aide to follow-up.
We are grateful to the Mayor for his day of service and for putting compassion into action as a Project Angel Food volunteer.