Before COVID19 stay-at-home orders became official, Kendal~Crosslands Communities’ Culinary teams worked quickly to provide nutritious meals safely for residents. They were able to mobilize from in-person dining to takeout meals to delivery of meals within days and in some cases within 48 hours. This was quite a feat because of how expansive the 275 independent residents are at each of our two Life Plan Community campuses – Kendal at Longwood and Crosslands. Our transportation staff and vehicles were deployed to help with meal delivery service and for safety reasons, culinary staff were divided into two teams and scheduled on different days to reduce contact.

Currently, each day residents receive pre-packaged salads, a reheatable entrée, fresh fruit, and dessert. The portions are large enough for two meals. Residents receive a week-long menu to choose from and each Sunday, residents receive a special treat with their meal: a token gift or an inspirational message to lift their spirits. Many residents have shared that they cannot wait to see what is delivered. Mondays are also special. Each resident can opt-in to receive a pint of ice cream. Also, to help ensure residents can remain safe at home, we also offer grocery delivery services twice per week. About 100 orders are received each day at each campus and staff fill and deliver the orders.

food packaged for delivery

Pre-packed meals ready for delivery Over 800 meals delivered each day and 100 grocery items.

To help a popular resident tradition of “cocktail time” continue, resident volunteers have been enlisted to coordinate virtual (Zoom) get-togethers to socialize with each other. Participants RSVP and staff deliver cheese and fruit.

These innovative solutions to ensure residents eat healthfully while remaining safe at home are a collaborative effort among culinary services staff from both our Kendal at Longwood and Crosslands campuses. Both residents and their families have expressed tremendous appreciation for these creative approaches and staff have received notes and calls to thank them.

We selected this idea for submission because it has been highly successful in protecting residents and we are honored to be awarded the grant that will be used toward staff appreciation efforts.