BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — A modern-day meals on wheels is coming to the most underserved communities in East Baton Rouge.
“With your paycheck, you’re killing yourself with a couple of jobs and it’s just still not stretching. So let us come along and help you,” said Christian Outreach Center Executive Director Brian Sleeth.
Areas known as food deserts have no or limited access to grocery stores. The Christian Outreach Center will soon see more relief as DoorDash becomes a key player in the problem.
“According to Together Baton Rouge, we have 75,000 residents in our community who live in an area designated as a food desert,” stated Development Director Matt Pham.
Sleeth said Baton Rouge Hispanic grocery store, Ideal Markets, will supply the food to 50 households.
“For places like North Baton Rouge or even Mid-City or downtown Baton Rouge… we want to be able to get fresh produce and food to people who have otherwise no access to it,” Sleeth explained.
Once a week DoorDash will pull up and drop off the groceries directly to your household. They say the program will run indefinitely and as long as the resources are available.
“Our job is just to be a listening ear to understand what the community needs and then to address those needs, and that’s what this program is all about,” said East Baton Rouge Parish District 5 Councilman Darryl Hurst.
Hurst is doing his part by bringing resources from Top Box to what he says is a great out-of-the-box concept.
“One option is for us to focus on snacks for the kids and the other one is to focus on actual meals actually sustained for the entire week,” he said.
“It’s to nourish someone’s physical body so that they can move themselves ultimately towards self-sufficiency,” added Pham.
With the price of living continuing to climb, they say the partnership with DoorDash was something the community really needed.
“I believe in private-public partnerships when you talk about companies giving back. If you have the resources, they’re willing to take the resources to your people at no cost to your community,” said Hurst.
“You’ve got groceries so high and gas edging toward $5 a gallon. It’s put a lot of people who otherwise wouldn’t have been in these circumstances in need,” explained Sleeth.
Deliveries will begin July 1 and residents in the Greater Baton Rouge Area are invited to apply for this free service by calling (225) 377-8582 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Emails will be followed up with a call from staff.