Community Calendar: Senior Spotlight

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By Judy Goddess


St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church
St. Gregory’s food bank is open Saturdays from noon to 2 p.m. It serves 94107 and 94110 zip code residents, but identification isn’t required. The pantry also has a grocery delivery program for homebound seniors and people with disabilities. No pantry on July 4th; home deliveries will be made on the 3rd.

St. Gregory, 500 De Haro Street, enter on Mariposa Street. For more information or to volunteer:  415.255.8100 or www.thefoodpantry. Please wear a mask when visiting food pantries.

Potrero Hill Neighborhood House
Before shelter-in-place, Project Open Hand operated a senior lunch program at the Nabe. Because seniors aren’t going out much, that program now provides frozen lunches to enjoy at home. 

Enrollees, or those who would like to be, that have trouble getting to the Nabe, contact Cathy De Luca at the Community Living Campaign to arrange home delivery: 415.821.1003 x122.

The Great Plates Program 
Great Plates delivers three restaurant meals a day to older adults sheltering- in-place through July 10. For more information: 415.355.6700 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. or


While sheltering-in-place curbs the spread of the novel coronavirus, it can intensify feelings of loneliness and social isolation, leading to negative health effects such as increased stress, heart disease, arthritis, type 2 diabetes, dementia and even suicide attempts. These effects aren’t unique to older people, but the elderly are especially vulnerable and potentially quarantined for many more months than younger adults.

Virtual Salsa Dancing and Salsa Fresca Class. In partnership with BRIDGE Housing, Leah’s Pantry hosts a live salsa dancing and cooking course.  Learn basic salsa steps, then see a demonstration of how to make Salsa Fresca. Thursday, July 16, 5 to 5:45 p.m. Free. Zoom link: For more information: 

The Community Living Campaign: Turning Strangers into Neighbors and Neighbors into Friends
The Community Living Campaign was about to open a Community Connectors program at the Nabe when the shelter-in-place order was issued. CLCs Community Connectors are organized around an area’s needs and interests, offering ways to meet neighbors and connect with local resources.  The mantra, “turning strangers into neighbors and neighbors into friends,” summarizes the program’s goal. During shelter-in-place CLC offers activities on Zoom, including exercise, nutrition, art, cooking and writing classes, online computer classes and one-on-one computer help, among others. For questions about the coronavirus, listen to Dr. Anna Chodos, a University of California, San Francisco geriatrician, every Friday from 12 to 1 p.m. Those needing help using Zoom can get assistance from CLC staff. 

Monthly calendar:

Well Connected
Well Connected, the Senior Center Without Walls, is a national, phone-based program that addresses loneliness through “activities, education, friendly conversation, and an assortment of classes and support groups for older adults accessible from the comfort of home. SCWW is a community of participants, staff, facilitators, presenters, and other volunteers who care about each other and who value being connected.” Groups take place daily. Programs are free.Mission District resident Niki Noyes, an active Well Connected participant, lives in an apartment she shares with her family. “Even though I have family and a lot of people around, I feel letdown when Well Connected isn’t on the air,” said Noyes. “These are the people I connect with … Sometimes new members complain of feeling like a stranger. I tell them, ‘very soon you’ll feel the same way. We are a big family and you’ll be part of it.’”

Check the Covia website for a program catalog and to register. Or call: 877.797.7299


As a result of the public health emergency, public transportation service has been reduced. But doctors still need to be visited, medications picked-up. The Essential Trip Card subsidizes two or three round trips by taxi a month for adults 65 years and older and people with disabilities.  Each $6 loaded on the card creates a $30 value; $12 a month equals $60. ETC is a debit card that must be funded before it’s used. It takes up to a week or more to activate it. According to SF Paratransit’s Natasha Opfell, “calls are either answered immediately or we will get back to you within a day. We want to enroll eligible riders as quickly as possible.” 

To apply, call 311 weekdays between 9 a.m. and 4:45 p.m., indicate the request is related to the ETC program, and ask to be transferred
to a live agent.