The People Concern’s Food Services Program proudly offers healthy, delicious and diverse meals to our interim housing program participants. With the holidays quickly approaching, there is no better time to uplift the importance of a home-cooked meal.
Our Food Services program provides three meals a day, 365 days a year, to our program participants at our 10 interim housing locations across L.A. County. We currently serve more than 1,500 meals a day, or 547,500 meals a year! “We have three deadlines every single day of the year (breakfast, lunch and dinner) that cannot be missed. Our program participants rely on us and we take it really seriously because we know that if there is something wrong with the food, that has an impact on the entire interim housing facility,” says Chris Archibald, Director of Food Services.
During the holiday season, our Food Services team looks forward to cooking extra special meals for our program participants, “Because of supply chain issues due to the pandemic, we’ve already started to plan. We like to create a meal that makes our program participants feel at home and know that they are cared for. You eat first with your eyes, so when we put something on the plate that looks appealing, it’s immediately communicated through the language of food, that we care,” says Chris. As COVID-19 restrictions ease, we also look forward to reinstating our Kitchen-Skills and Life-Skills Groups to educate program participants about nutrition, healthy shopping, how to repurpose leftovers and general philosophies and prevailing wisdom related to food.
Our Food Services team is comprised of culinary professionals who firmly believe that everyone deserves to be housed, healthy and safe. “It is really important to me that our cooking doesn’t feel like institutionalized cooking. We want our menus to be fresher, healthier and more varied so that our program participants are not seeing the same thing over and over again. We want to eat great food and so do our program participants,” says Chris. “It wasn’t until I became a volunteer at Turning Point, one of The People Concern’s interim housing facilities, that I realized how rewarding it can be to work in our kitchens. Our work is driven by the fact that we love to cook. Then there’s that moment when you are standing in the window serving a meal and a program participant says, ‘hey I got my keys’. That’s everything.”