Lift-Up, Valley Meals receive final Garfield County CARES grants for 2020 |

Lift-Up, Valley Meals receive final Garfield County CARES grants for 2020

Garfield County commissioners on Monday awarded two nonprofit human service agencies some of the last remaining federal CARES Act dollars available before year’s end.

Lift-Up, which has operated regular drive-through food distributions from Carbondale to Parachute since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, was awarded another $100,000.

That brings the total to $300,000 for the countywide poverty assistance organization for the year — part of the $2.2 million in CARES funding made available to Garfield County.

Valley Meals and More, which stepped up its home-delivered senior meals program in the Carbondale area during the pandemic, will receive another $8,640, county commissioners decided during their regular Monday meeting.

Lift-Up has served a total of 3,111 families in the last two months through its drive-up food delivery program, Executive Director Angela Mills said.

This week’s pre-Christmas distribution should include two bags of non-perishable food, plus locally sourced organic ground beef and a turkey breast, Mills said.

Half of the additional $100,000 will go to purchase pantry food through Food Bank of the Rockies, she said. The other half is to be used to pre-purchase fresh produce from area farmers next year through Lift-Up’s farm-to-table program, Mills said.

Valley Meals and More is operated through Carbondale-based Senior Matters. Program director Mary Kenyon informed the commissioners that the previous $30,000 in COVID-assistance funds granted by the county have gone directly to area restaurants that have prepared the senior meals.

“That’s money put right into the community,” she said, before reading an email from the daughter of one of the recipients thanking Valley Meals not only for the food, but providing what Kenyon called a “connection to the community” through the weekday meal deliveries.

Meal deliveries will take place on Christmas Day, as well, she said.

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