Parents and students can also take advantage of Florida’s Summer BreakSpot program, activated by Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. The program has 934 sites across the state that serve meals to school age children. Visit SummerBreakSpot.FreshFromFlorida.com
, enter your address, and search up to 50 miles to find participating free meal locations near you.
Meals for Seniors
Miami-Dade County’s Meals on Wheels program provides homebound seniors age 60 and older with free meals. Participants receive seven free, frozen meals each week at their residence, as well as fresh fruit, milk, and other items. Meals are delivered between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM on weekdays. Spouses of participants and dependent individuals with disabilities who live with participants are also eligible for free meals. Call (786) 469-4707 to see if you are eligible.
Florida’s senior centers offer free meals to seniors who are not homebound. You can find a list of senior centers in Miami-Dade County here
. Note that some centers may be temporarily closed, so you should contact the location directly to confirm if they are still offering services onsite or if alternative services are available.
If you have questions about resources near you, call the Elder Helpline at 1 (800) 963-5337 or Miami-Dade County’s 311 Call Center.
: locating a food pantry near you: Feeding South Florida
: farm share food distribution sites by zip code: Farm Share
: free food distribution sites and resources: Victory for Youth
Jewish Community Services of South Florida operates a kosher food bank and provides meal and grocery delivery services to homebound and isolated clients. Visit JCSFL.ORG
or call JCS Access at (305) 576-6550 for information. JCS's 211 Helpline Services provides services for those in need and is open 24/7.
Congress has allocated additional funding to federal food assistance programs run through the USDA. This funding allows individuals to access SNAP more easily, suspending work requirements for the program through the end of the COVID-19 national emergency. This change ensures that people who lost their employment during the coronavirus pandemic are eligible for SNAP benefits. You can apply for SNAP benefits through the Florida Department of Children and Families here
. Paper applications are available at Miami-Dade County Public Libraries. If you already have SNAP benefits, the Department of Agriculture has started a pilot program through which you can order groceries with your SNAP benefits online at either Amazon and Walmart and have them delivered to your home.
Meals for Heroes Miami
Meals for Heroes Miami launched on April 1,2020, The non-profit, donation-based organization was created to address two complementary objectives: feed the stressed and exhausted first responders and provide revenue for Miami restaurants. Meals for Heroes Miami reaches out to hospitals and testing centers to determine their needs. In partnership with local restaurants, orders are placed for 50 to 500 meals daily to be delivered to each facility. Restaurant partners take all necessary precautions outlined by the CDC and work with each facility to ensure a contact-less delivery of the meals.
The growing list of restaurant partners include RED Steakhouse, Joe’s Stone Crab, Yardbird, Stubborn Seed, and Thierry Isambert Catering and Event Design. Front-line recipients to date include Jackson Memorial Hospital, Miami Baptist Hospital, Miami Baptist Miami Beach, and the Miami Beach Fire Department among others.
You can donate and find more information at MealsforheroesMiami.org
Safe Grocery Shopping
To help protect yourself, grocery store workers, and other shoppers, it is important to keep a few things in mind:
- Prepare a shopping list in advance. Buy just 1 to 2 weeks-worth of groceries at a time. Buying more than you need can create unnecessary demand and temporary shortages.
- Wear a face covering or mask while you are in the store. The City of Miami is requiring all grocery store shoppers to wear masks. Check your, county or city guidelines for any other requirements.
- Carry your own wipes, or use one provided by the store to wipe down the handles of the shopping cart or basket.
- If you use reusable shopping bags, ensure they are cleaned or washed before each use.
- Practice social distancing while shopping – keeping at least 6 feet between you, other shoppers, and store employees. Keep your hands away from your face.
- Wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds when you return home and again after you put away your groceries.
- There is no evidence of food packaging being associated with the transmission of COVID-19. However, if you wish, you can wipe down product packaging and allow it to air dry, as an extra precaution.