Chicago Food Pantry Works With Block Clubs To Deliver Groceries To West Side Seniors

  • Date: 01/11/2021

A West Side food pantry is partnering with a local block club network to make deliveries to seniors struggling to access food. The block club network, organized by social service agency I AM ABLE, works with the Harmony Community Church food pantry to have groceries delivered weekly to seniors in need.

Residents in the block club network have relationships with one another, so they know what kinds of challenges their neighbors face and the type of support they need. To bolster the mutual support neighbors in the area give each other, I AM ABLE has partnerships with more than 30 community groups “that we can make referrals to provide support and assistance to the people who live in that eight-block sector,” Worthy said.

By partnering with I AM ABLE, the food pantry is able to take advantage of the tight-knit social infrastructure the block club network has been building for years. Having a relationship-driven food delivery model allows the pantry to more easily identify the seniors who need food and check in to see what other support they might want, Carioscio said.

“They’re able to make wellness checks every week when they’re calling to let them know the food is coming. They can also ask how they’re doing and see that their seniors in their area are doing well. And on the other hand, the seniors aren’t opening their doors to people they don’t know,” Carioscio said.

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