A Hearts to Serve client beneficiary with his newly delivered food donation. (Credit: Archdiocese of Los Angeles)
A telephone hotline supported by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, St. Vincent de Paul Society and Knights of Columbus to help the needy during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis has expanded to provide social workers and registered nurses, it was announced Wednesday.
The Hearts to Serve hotline aims to help the elderly, homebound and pregnant navigate the health care system while also offering a sympathetic ear for those experiencing anxiety.
“Hearts to Serve connects people in need with people who want to help,” said Kathleen Domingo, senior director of the Archdiocese’s Office of Life, Justice and Peace. “It is as simple as that.”
The hotline has already served close to 150 people in Los Angeles and has inspired similar hotlines supported by the dioceses in Orange, Sacramento and San Francisco, Domingo said.
“Catholic communities are helping those in need in our parishes and schools, and I am glad that our efforts are having a ripple effect to other dioceses,” she said. “We are happy to let people know that we are here to help.”
Partners in the initiative include Options United, which donated the hotline, and the St. Vincent de Paul Society, which provides trained volunteers to answer the phone. Knights of Columbus make deliveries, and volunteers from other parts of the Catholic community are finding resources, making donations, following up on requests, and spending time talking with callers. Nurses and social workers are connected with Providence Community Health.
Those in need of food, supplies or who are experiencing anxiety can call the hotline at 855-423-6780 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
Volunteers are available to connect callers with local resources for food and other household necessities for home delivery to those experiencing financial troubles.
For more information on Hearts to Serve and for those interested in volunteering, please visit: lacatholics.org/hearts-serve/.