Cambridge Launches New Project with Business Community to Support Homeless Community During the COVID-19 Crisis

Cambridge Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui and City Manager Louis A. DePasquale today announced an innovative new project that will begin Monday, March 23, 2020 and provide food to the City’s homeless community during the COVID-19 public safety crisis. With many shelter programs short staffed and no longer having the capacity to prepare meals on site, the city will begin contracting with local restaurants in Central and Harvard Square to provide bag or boxed meals for lunch and dinner. These meals will then be delivered to shelters and programs that have indicated a strong need for meals.

The Central Square Business Improvement District (BID) and the Harvard Square Business Association are identifying restaurants in their Squares that can help provide meals to the shelters in need of food next week. The city will then be seeking to identify additional restaurants for contracts and meals beyond next week.

“We want to thank the Central Square BID and the Harvard Square Business Association for their willingness to once again step up, work with their members and our staff, and help our most vulnerable residents,” said Mayor Siddiqui and City Manager DePasquale in a joint statement. “By contracting with local restaurants in Central and Harvard Square, where a large majority of homeless programs are located, we are able to minimize delivery challenges, and facilitate the availability of both hot and cold meals to shelters and other sites in both Squares.”

If restaurants are interested in supporting this initiative by providing individual hot and/or cold bagged or boxed meals for distribution to the homeless population at various locations, they should contact the City of Cambridge’s Purchasing Department at purchasing@cambridgema.gov by Monday, March 23 at 9 a.m. Once the city has a list of interested vendors, the Purchasing Department will send the vendors who inquire a formal solicitation of quotes for them to submit prices to Purchasing.

The city and the Cambridge Public Health Department continue to work closely together to identify resources to reinforce the city’s response and preparedness activities. For more information and updates on COVID-19, please visit the city’s dedicated information page: https://www.cambridgema.gov/covid19.

Page was posted on 3/20/2020 7:33 PM
Page was last modified on 3/24/2020 2:47 PM
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