A group of approximately 30 students from Los Altos and Mountain View high schools have banded together to deliver food to health-care workers.
Founded by 17-year-old Shivani Mandalaparthi, Food For Frontliners works with local restaurants to provide meals to hospitals.
“It all started back in April when I was listening to the news and I saw this health-care worker break down into tears because she wasn’t able to relax or eat anything during her shift, and that made me really concerned,” said Mandalaparthi, a senior at Los Altos High School.
Working with her friends, Mandalaparthi partnered with local businesses to do something about it. After fundraising, the team works with hospitals to decide what meals health-care workers would like.
“We make sure the food is individually wrapped in order to ensure that it’s safer for our health-care workers and more sanitary in general,” said Maya Atassi, head of Food For Frontliners’ food distribution team.
On the day of delivery, the team works to track the process and ensure timely pickup and delivery of the meals. They also deliver thank-you cards and notes to the health-care workers.
“During our first delivery to Palo Alto, we personally met the medical professionals working there and they were super grateful,” Mandalaparthi said. “I remember when I first went there ... the doctor who we met there just had tears of happiness in her eyes. She was thanking us for the service that we do.”
So far, the team has delivered to the Palo Alto Respiratory Clinic in Mountain View, Valley Medical Center in San Jose and the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Palo Alto. The group plans to expand locally to Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City and Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles via remote catered delivery.
“Since they have been particularly hard-hit with the coronavirus, we wanted to expand our operations beyond the Bay Area,” said Atassi, a senior at Los Altos High.
The organization intends to continue its fundraising and delivery efforts. The members are now selling Food For Frontliners bracelets, with all proceeds donated to Food For Frontliners to keep the operation
To donate to Food For Frontliners’ GoFundMe campaign, visit gf.me/u/x6xv8a. For more information, visit foodforfrontliners.wixsite.com/mysite