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Mama’s Kitchen Partners with Sycuan Casino Resort to Support Emergency Response Fund

Sycuan Casino Resort pledges to match dollar-for-dollar up to $25,000 toward Mama’s Kitchen’s Emergency Response Fund to support the nonprofit’s increased expenses due to COVID-19

San Diego CA— For more than 20 years, Sycuan Casino Resort has been a proud supporter of Mama’s Kitchen’s mission, vision, and events, including its annual Mama’s Day fundraiser. To continue this longtime partnership, now through August 31, Sycuan has pledged to match dollar-for-dollar all donations up to $25,000 in support of Mama’s Kitchen’s Emergency Response Fund, which will directly benefit the organization’s increased demand in response to COVID-19.

A local nonprofit, Mama’s Kitchen provides home-delivered, medically tailored meals and nutrition services to critically ill San Diegans, currently our most vulnerable population. The organization serves San Diegans affected with HIV, cancer, congestive heart failure, and type 2 diabetes. Its services allow clients to receive the nutritional support they need without leaving the safety of their home, which makes Mama’s Kitchen’s work even more critical during the pandemic to ensure its immunocompromised clients are not risking their health and safety to obtain a meal.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge our community, many San Diegans are still fearful of leaving their homes, including our clients who are most vulnerable to devastating effects of coronavirus,” says Alberto Cortés, CEO, Mama’s Kitchen. “We’re honored to once again have the support of Sycuan Casino Resort to help us raise critical funds to provide our neighbors the nutrition they need during these uncertain times. Sycuan Casino Resort and the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation have been dedicated supporters of Mama’s Kitchen and our local community for many years. As our team continues to work to ensure our clients never have to worry about where their next meal is coming from, we are grateful for the generous dedication of community partners like Sycuan that we can continue our work to keep our clients safe at home.”

As the pandemic progressed in our region, Mama’s Kitchen saw an immediate increase in demand for its services to provide home-delivered nutrition to critically ill individuals and families who are most at risk of devastating effects of COVID-19 given their compromised immune systems and chronic illnesses. On May 26, the nonprofit delivered 6,300 meals to a record 700 critically ill clients in only one day. This is a 62 percent increase from nearly three months ago before the stay-at-home order was issued, and the nonprofit projects its clientele and meals served will remain elevated due to the crisis. Since the pandemic began, Mama’s Kitchen has delivered more than 220,000 meals.

With an increase in demand, comes increased costs to care for those in need. Mama’s Kitchen’s goal is to raise $450,000 to cover the increase in expenses due to the pandemic. The Emergency Response Fund gives community members the option to donate directly to Mama’s Kitchen or start their own fundraising page. As of July 1, Mama’s Kitchen has raised $361,021 through its Emergency Response Fund. But the need for support is still great. Mama’s Kitchen and Sycuan are hopeful that the dollar-for-dollar match will help to meet the $450,000 goal and help to keep up with increased demand.

“We have been proud supporters of Mama’s Kitchen for more than two decades,” said Cody J. Martinez, Chairman, Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation. “Right now more than ever, Mama’s Kitchen needs our support. Sycuan is pledging $25,000 to the Emergency Response Fund and we hope that many more people will consider donating to this incredible cause, so that our critically ill neighbors can get the nutritious meals that they need.”

Mama’s Kitchen is still accepting referrals for critically ill individuals and their dependent children, and does not have a waiting list. For 30 years, the organization has never turned away a qualified individual and is working to continue this goal throughout the pandemic.

Community members can donate to Mama’s Kitchen’s Emergency Response Fund and have their contribution matched via online, by mail or by phone. To learn more about the Sycuan $25,000 Matching Challenge visit mamaskitchen.org/sycuanmatch. For more ways to support the organization’s efforts, visit mamaskitchen.org.

About Mama’s Kitchen

Mama’s Kitchen was established in 1990 by a San Diego caregiver who enlisted volunteers to prepare and deliver free meals to neighbors who were sick with HIV/AIDS and unable to cook for themselves. The organization realized that a reliable home meal delivery service was needed to ensure that these individuals would continue to receive nutritious, life-sustaining food. In 2004, Mama’s Pantry was launched to serve HIV+ San Diegans who are healthy enough to cook but unable to purchase nutritious food due to extremely low income. Since then, the organization has expanded their Home-Delivered Meal Service program to other at-risk populations including those battling cancer (2006), and individuals with heart failure and diabetes (2018). Beyond medically tailored meals, clients also receive nutritional counseling from registered dietitians. In 2019, the organization delivered its 9 millionth meal.

For 30 years, Mama’s Kitchen has never turned away a client who qualified for its services. The organization’s commitment to its clients remains unchanged and over the years Mama’s Kitchen has expanded its mission to serve San Diegans affected by HIV, cancer, congestive heart failure, and type 2 diabetes. Mama’s Kitchen currently provides home-delivered meals, pantry services, and nutrition education services to over 1,600 women, men, and children in San Diego County annually. Learn more and make a donation at www.mamaskitchen.org. Connect with Mama’s Kitchen on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.