The partnership has been a true success story.
A partnership to provide a Multicultural Meal Delivery Service for people in need during the pandemic is set to expand to the wider community as of June 1.
When COVID-19 restrictions came into force, both Hunter Multicultural Communities (HMC) and Flexible Options found they had to drastically adapt their service delivery models.
HMC, a non-profit benevolent organisation which provides Aged Care Services and Social Support and Community Programs for seniors, vulnerable individuals and communities, as well as those with disabilities and their carers, had to close the doors on their local wellness centres.
As a result clients lost much of the social contact, engagement, participation and social cohesion that were encouraged and facilitated at these centres.
Flexible Options is an organisation that supports people with a disability and their carers through the provision of a multitude of services that aim to create choice, opportunity and skills for life. Covid forced a lot of Flexible Options supported employees out of work.
In response, HMC got creative and partnered with Flexible Options to introduce a number of new initiatives.
One of those initiatives was the Multicultural Meal Delivery Service, designed to provide clients who are aged, vulnerable or that have a disability, with the option to request a high quality and ethnically inspired three course meal consisting of an entrée, main and dessert.
The meals are cooked freshly each day on site at the HMC's commercial kitchen by their qualified chef with the assistance of HMC cooks and Flexible Options clients and then delivered to people's doors chilled.
The success of the program which has been in operation for approximately 6 weeks, has grown from delivering 29 x 3 course meals per week to now a staggering 150 x 3 course meals per week.
To date, only NDIS clients and those assessed by My Aged Care were eligible for the subsidised services, however as of Monday, June 1, the HMC is expanding the service to ALL individuals.
"The partnership has been a true success story particularly as both organisations closely mirror one another in terms of objectives and organisational ethos," HMC CEO Annette Gebhardt explained.
"The HMC partnered with Flexible Options from the outset in mid-April 2020.
"Both organisations were keen to redeploy our employees who would have otherwise been temporarily stood down as a result of the temporary suspension and closure of our Group Social Support Health and Wellness Centres from COVID-19 in accordance with Federal Government and Medical Officer advice.
"The meal delivery program not only provided essential services to key vulnerable clients and areas of the community, but also enabled us to provide meaningful work for many of our cooks, transport drivers and members of the Godfather Espresso family."
For general bookings, meal requests and seasonal menus, please contact the Hunter Multicultural Communities Inc. on (02) 49608248.