Meals that Heal Guidelines & FAQ

We have updated our Meals that Heal policies and guidelines in the wake of COVID-19 to prioritize the safety of our families, volunteers and staff. All groups must abide by these rules in order to participate. 

Dinner Volunteer Times: 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm, dinner served from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm 

 

PARTICIPATION REQUIREMENTS

  • Meals that Heal groups may include a maximum of four (4) volunteers. Everyone who comes with your group counts toward this total. This is a temporary limit during COVID-related restrictions.
  • Meals that Heal volunteers must be at least 18 years old. As an increased precaution at this time, children are not currently able to participate. 
  • All volunteers must be completely illness/symptom-free (cold, flu, fever, stomach virus, etc.) for at least 14 days prior to volunteering. 
  • Volunteers should consider personal health risks and limitations prior to volunteering. The CDC defines higher risk individuals as older adults (65+), and people with serious, chronic medical conditions (heart disease, diabetes, lung disease, etc.). 
  • All volunteers will complete a brief COVID-19  screening upon arrival at the House. We also ask volunteers who test positive for or are exposed to COVID-19 within 14 days of their shift refrain from any volunteerism. 
  • Volunteers must wear facemasks, gloves, and hats/hairnets, so that hair is pulled back securelyRMHCCIN will provide aprons, gloves and hairnets. Additional health practices during participation will include frequent hand washing, proper glove changesand no face, hair or phone touching. 

 

FOOD SAFETY

Cooking On-Site: Your group will receive direction from our culinary team to safely prepare, cook and assemble all food in the House kitchen. Our culinary team will secure all needed groceries and ingredients in advance of your meal thanks to the donation you made when you completed your registration. 

 Safety Practices: Our culinary team will review all safety protocols while on site. We ask that our volunteers practice proper food safety measures, including frequent handwashing, eliminating cross-contamination/raw foods, wearing hairnets/hair ties, face masks and gloves, etc. Additionally, all refrigerated items should stay chilled as long as possible, and food in the kitchen should always be covered. 

 

MEAL SERVICE & CLEAN UP

Social Distancing: We remind all group members to be mindful of spacing between one another while participating.

On-Site Dining: House dining rooms will have limited seating capacity, ensuring our families are able to practice safe social distancing while eating. Additionally, some families may choose to eat in their rooms depending on seating availability and their comfort level. RMHCCIN families often have inconsistent schedules due to patient treatments and may not be in the dining room to eat while your group is on-site. Please know that finding a freshly prepared meal waiting in the refrigerator when they return is a welcome sight.   

Packing Meals: As an added precaution, volunteers will pack all prepared food into individually sized to-go containers for families to enjoy either during or after the scheduled mealtime. 

Clean-Up: Participants are responsible for thoroughly cleaning the kitchen as part of the Meals that Heal volunteer shift. Cleaning instructions will be provided by our culinary team, and all volunteers are expected to stay until clean-up is complete. and all trash is taken to the dumpster.

 

VOLUNTEER EXPECTATIONS

We strive to create a safe, welcoming and respectful environment for our families, staff and volunteers. As such, we expect volunteers to adhere to the following: 

  • Bring compassion and respect to your volunteerism. 
  • Follow direction of RMHCCIN staff  
  • We welcome volunteers, staff and families of all backgrounds, ethnicities and religions. Please exclude any personal religious influences while on-site to ensure a welcoming space for all. 
  • You may take photos of your group only and must thoroughly wash your hands after taking pictures or using your phone. Please do not take photos or videos of RMHCCIN families without permission. 
  • Volunteers are prohibited from exchanging personal information with or soliciting services to our families. 

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Is there an age requirement?

To ensure the health and safety of all volunteers, families and staff, as well as the food safety of the meals being prepared for our families, all Meals that Heal volunteers must be at least 18 years old.

 

What is the maximum number of volunteers per group?

Meals that Heal groups currently have a maximum group size of four (4) volunteers.  Because of COVID-19, we are limiting the group size to reduce the number of people in and out of our House and Family Room. If your group includes more than four volunteers, we ask that you divide your group and provide meals on different dates. 

 

I have extra volunteers or children who want to attend, can they still come and watch without volunteering?

No – everyone who comes with your group should be there to actively volunteer and will be counted toward the total of four. 

 

I have an illness or symptoms that aren’t associated with COVID-19, can I volunteer?

We require all volunteers to be entirely illness and symptom free for at least 14 days before volunteering. We will not allow volunteers with an illness or symptoms of any kind to participate at this time. 

 

I registered and tested positive for COVID-19 before my arrival. Should I let RMHCCIN know?

Volunteers who test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days of their volunteer shift must refrain from participating. Please contact Chef Vlad Bora at 317-269-2247 if this impacts your group’s ability to serve a meal.  

 

I tested positive for COVID-19 after volunteering. What should I do?

If you test positive after your visit to the House, please contact the house manager at 317-269-2247 so we can begin contact tracing. Your group may be contacted to help facilitate these efforts. 

 

How long is my group expected to be at the House?

Groups should plan to volunteer for 3-4 hours.

 

Do I need to bring my own dishes, serving utensils, plates, kitchen tools, etc.?

The House provides all dishes, drinkware, cutlery, and kitchen equipment needed to prepare and serve your meal.

 

Is RMHCCIN staff on-site during Meals that Heal volunteer shifts?

Yes, there will always be a culinary team member to answer questions, get you situated in the kitchen and ensure everyone is participating in a safe manner. In addition, we will provide direction throughout your entire volunteer time. We will check-in with each group at least every 30 minutes to facilitate glove-changing, handwashing, proper social distancing and to ensure that all safety measures are being upheld.

 

How does the Meals that Heal program work?

Meals that Heal volunteer groups provide financial donations to support the program, and our culinary team takes care of planning the meal and purchasing all ingredients.

 

What are the financial donation amounts to participate in Meals that Heal?

Donations support the ongoing success of the culinary program and ensure our House can offer families a variety of delicious, healthy meals each week. Groups donate via credit card during the scheduling process.  

  • A gift of $35provides dinner for 40-50 people.

 

My group can no longer attend on our registered date, can I get a refund?

We will make every effort to reschedule your group for a future date, but no refunds will be issued if you need to cancel.  Your financial contribution will still support Meals that Heal and provide meals to families.

 

I still have questions, so who can I talk to for more information?

If you have additional questions about Meals that Heal, these guidelines or your group’s participation, please contact Meredith Smith at 317-948-9967 or msmith@rmhccin.org.