Community Servings Completes $25 Million Expansion Project to Transform Medically Tailored Meals Program

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|Dec 19|magazine15 min read

BOSTON, Dec. 17, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Community Servings, a nonprofit provider of medically tailored meals and nutrition services to individuals and families living with critical and chronic illnesses, today announced the completion of a $25 million kitchen expansion and three-story addition project at its longtime home in Jamaica Plain.

With the opening of a 31,000-square-foot Food Campus, Community Servings plans to double the number of people involved in its volunteer programs and triple production of its scratch-made meals. The nonprofit is now well-positioned to expand its service footprint statewide and will soon begin feeding even more critically and chronically ill individuals and their families across Massachusetts.

"For 30 years, we've been focused on bringing nutritious, scratch-made, medically tailored meals to our neighbors in need.  With the opening of our new Food Campus, we plan to double and eventually triple the amount of meals we prepare and deliver over the next 10 years," said David B. Waters, CEO of Community Servings.  "Our goal is to ensure that people across the Commonwealth who are living with critical and chronic illnesses receive the nutritious meals they need to maintain and improve their health."

Community Servings celebrated the transformation of its 179 Amory St. building with a ribbon-cutting ceremony joined by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, among other distinguished guests.

Community Servings' goal is to increase production to 1.5 million meals per year over the next decade.  The increased capacity will alleviate the current waitlist of over 100 potential clients in need, and allow Community Servings to fulfill new contracts with Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) that will soon begin covering health-related social needs for certain members of MassHealth (Medicaid).

Community Servings prepares meals to meet 15 types of diets, all overseen by registered dietitian nutritionists, for clients battling 35 different illnesses, including HIV/AIDS, cancer, kidney disease, diabetes and heart disease.  More than half of the clients have multiple illnesses, and 94 percent are living in poverty.  Meals are made from scratch, delivered weekly, and include five days' worth of lunch, dinner and snacks.

The new building has more spaces for classrooms and culinary instruction, allowing the organization to increase the number of graduates from its Teaching Kitchen, a food service job training program for people who are navigating major life transitions and facing barriers to employment.  More than 80 percent of last year's graduates obtained gainful employment.

Community Servings' new administrative space includes a Food & Health Policy Center where staff oversee research into how medically tailored meals impact the costs of care in public and private health care models.  The goal is to prove the power of food as medicine with clear and compelling data.

Recent published studies involving Community Servings have found 16 percent net reductions in medical costs associated with patients who receive medically tailored meals.  More and more providers are viewing medically tailored, home-delivered meals as a low-cost, high-value service for severely ill patients.

About Community Servings

Community Servings is a not-for-profit organization with a nearly 30-year history of providing medically tailored meals and nutrition services to individuals and families coping with critical and chronic illnesses like HIV/AIDS, cancer, kidney disease, diabetes, heart disease, and others.  The meals are made-from-scratch and home-delivered, sending the message to those in greatest need that someone cares.  Community Servings helps its clients maintain their health and dignity and preserve the integrity of their families through free, culturally appropriate meals, nutrition education and counseling, and other community programs.  For more information, visit www.servings.org.

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SOURCE Community Servings