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  • CommUnify and VTC Enterprises Announce Partnership

    Local Nonprofits Join Forces to Provide Nutritious Meals to North County Seniors

    The Board of Directors of CommUnify (www.CommUnifySB.org) and VTC Enterprises (www.vtc-sm.org) are pleased to announce their partnership to provide nutritious meals to at-risk seniors of Northern Santa Barbara County.

    For over 12,000 members of our community, CommUnify represents the difference in living between uncertainty and stability. CommUnify is a nonprofit organization working to find innovative and sustainable solutions for Santa Barbara County residents to improve and maintain their health, resilience, and financial security – one of those solutions is Healthy at Home. As part of the Senior Nutrition Program, clients receive hot, nutritious, high quality meals safely delivered right to their doorstep on weekdays, along with additional frozen meals on Friday to provide sustenance over the weekend. This service allows seniors to live independently in their own home, feeling connected to the community they love.

    The urgent need for Healthy at Home has more than doubled since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in mid-March. No senior should ever have to make the choice between buying food, paying rent, keeping the lights on, or buying necessary prescription drugs. CommUnify’s Senior Nutrition Program helps clients maintain their physical health and emotional well-being, and often their delivery driver might be their only visitor of the day. To address this surging need, a better solution for the growing demand in Northern Santa Barbara County was identified in a collaboration between CommUnify and VTC Enterprises.

    “We are pleased to be working with the committed staff at VTC Enterprises to fulfill our mission to provide delicious and nutritious meals to the most vulnerable in our community – our seniors,” said Patricia Keelean, Chief Executive Officer of CommUnify. “There is such synchronicity between our organizations and their missions of serving the most underserved in our community. I admire the incredible work VTC has done and look forward to joining forces to expand the positive impact both our organizations can have on the seniors we serve.”

    VTC Enterprises (VTC) will serve as the North County food vendor for this program and will be responsible for producing 250 meals per day, providing improved food security to approximately 200 residents. Using menus created by CommUnify's on-staff Registered Dietician, these meals are specifically designed to be nutritionally- balanced to suit the senior population. VTC is a place for individuals with disabilities to thrive, and this partnership provides yet another opportunity for them to obtain employment and valuable experience. VTC uses a Person-Centered approach to design services based upon what is most essential and meaningful to an individual and provides them with the training, support, and encouragement to reach their life goals. VTC’s small businesses offer individuals the opportunity to work in several different industries including: The ‘A’ Street Café restaurant at 2445 A Street, Santa Maria which serves breakfast and lunch 6:30am-1:30pm; VTC Grounds Maintenance for residential or business properties; Innovative Printing Solutions, a full-service copy and mailing shop and home of VTC Promotional Button production. These jobs are an essential component to acquiring the skills and knowledge that lead to increased independence. Work and social interaction build confidence and open avenues for people with disabilities to participate and contribute to their community in positive and meaningful ways.

    “We are thrilled to partner with CommUnify to ensure Seniors in Santa Barbara County receive hot nutritious meals,” said Jason Telander, CEO, VTC Enterprises. “The partnership provides additional employment and training opportunities for our staff in The ‘A’ Street Café and allows us to be part of the broader good work going on in our community.”

    For more information about the partnership between CommUnify and VTC Enterprises, and to arrange interviews with Patricia Keelean, CEO, CommUnify and Jason Telander, CEO, VTC Enterprises, or to request high resolution images, please contact Joni Kelly at CommUnify at 805-964-8857 ext. #1109 or via email jkelly@CommUnifySB.org.