Program Provides 3 Nutritious Meals a Day

The City of Rancho Mirage City Council voted to become the local administrator of the Great Plates Delivered program. Adults 65 and older and adults 60–64 who are at high-risk from COVID-19, can have three nutritious meals a day delivered to them free of charge while they continue to stay safer at home.

It’s a win-win

Many local restaurants were not getting much business due to the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders. At-risk seniors staying home to avoid exposure to coronavirus haven’t been able to get healthy meals. The Great Plates Delivered program is a win-win for everyone because seniors now have access to three healthy meals a day and local restaurants are able to earn money during this challenging economy.

Participating restaurants that provide meals receive up to $66 per day: $16 for breakfast, $17 for lunch, $28 for dinner, and $5 for incidentals.

How it works

The City of Rancho Mirage partners with multiple local restaurants and food providers. They prepare and deliver three meals per day to seniors who qualify for enrollment. Local residents must be aged 65 or older, or 60–64 and at high-risk as defined by the CDC, including:

  • Individuals who are COVID-19 positive (as documented by a state/local public health official or medical health professional),
  • Individuals who have been exposed to COVID-19 (as documented by a state/local public health official or medical health professional), or
  • Individuals with an underlying condition.

All adults must live alone or with one other program-eligible adult. They must not be currently receiving assistance from other state or federal nutrition assistance programs and cannot earn more than 600% of the federal poverty limit. Individuals must also affirm they have an inability to prepare or obtain meals.

Individuals who receive In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS),  health care coverage through Medi-Cal, or other public assistance, are eligible to participate as long as a criteria for eligibility is met. Receiving other types of public assistance is allowable, just not state or federal nutrition assistance programs.

How to enroll

Those who qualify must enroll in the Great Plates Delivered program.

  •  Call the Rancho Mirage COVID Hotline at 877-652-4844. 
  • The line is monitored Monday–Friday, 8 am–5 pm by City staff. 
  • Eligibility verification can be completed over the phone.

On the menu

The City of Rancho Mirage determines how meals are selected and delivered. Meals meet specific nutritional requirements and the individuals delivering meals are subject to background checks. While restaurants may elect to use food delivery programs such as Grubhub, Postmates, DoorDash or Uber Eats, they are encouraged to provide their own delivery service in an effort to better coordinate the daily deliveries and keep more of the funds in-house.

Rancho Mirage was the first to in the Coachella Valley to participate in this program and Norma’s Italian Kitchen was the first restaurant in Riverside County to join. There are now many restaurants in Rancho Mirage that have signed up to deliver dishes to seniors.

Riverside County Board Chair and Fourth District Supervisor V. Manuel Perez said, “The operation at Norma’s Italian Kitchen is inspiring and shows that this program is helping to save jobs and provide exceptional service to seniors in our community.”

The Great Plates Delivered program is scheduled to run until June 10, 2020. The state of California intends on requesting an extension for the Great Plates Delivered program.