It was announced Monday that 850 purchased meals for medical staff would be delivered to nine local medical facilities over the next two weeks. The first of 17 deliveries arrived at ECMC this morning. The scheduled deliveries will continue through May 8 at various other facilities.
The 46 local Lions Clubs in WNY Lions were awarded a $13,149 grant, part of a Lions Club International Foundation emergency grant of $200,000 being used across New York. Funds are being utilized to purchase meals for frontline medical staff dealing with COVID-19-related care. Lions has responded with 121 COVID related grants to date – over $2.6 million in The United States alone.
After conferring with various area medical facilities about their staff needs, WNY Lions decided on purchasing meals, and also decided to use locally owned restaurants as part of the project. Restaurants were chosen in part for their reputation for giving back to their communities before the COVID-19 crisis.
A press release noted each medical staff will also get a “COVID comfort kit” of “helpful items to make their heroic efforts a little easier, even if it is for a moment during this pandemic.”
The hospitals recipients include ECMC, St. Joseph's Hospital, Sisters of Charity, Mercy Hospital of Buffalo, Kenmore Mercy Hospital, Mount St. Mary's, Buffalo General, Millard Fillmore Suburban and Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center.
WNY Lions District Gov. Regina Cecconi said, “This particular grant could only be used for respite care for our essential workers, and WNY Lions worked together nonstop to come up with a plan, gather all the necessary information, letters, quotes and, most importantly, our cabinet was able to meet via Zoom three times to discuss, plan and finalize this giving initiative.
“We know essential workers often forget to eat due to their hectic schedule and ensuring they receive a meal is helpful to them and everyone around them. The 'COVID comfort kits' contain items identified by those on the front lines. Both the meals, which are independently packaged, and ‘COVID comfort kits’ will also have a 3-by-3 logo sticker prominently displaying 'Lions Clubs International Foundation Kindness Matters.’ ”
WNY Lions are part of the 100-year-old-plus Lions Club International, one of the largest and oldest community service organizations in the world. The clubs focus on the local communities and help with initiatives improving peoples’ lives, combating vision problems, responding to major catastrophes, solving hunger, helping the environment, and providing valuable life skills to youth. Visit wnylions.org or lionsclubs.org for more information.