Lyft serves those most in need

LyftUp offers free essential transportation rides during the pandemic.

Through Lyft’s newest program, LyftUp, free rides are provided to those most in need. Lyft is partnering with hundreds of nonprofits to make sure vulnerable communities have the access they need to essential services. They are also offering free rides to front-line workers, and helping to facilitate deliveries to those who can’t go out themselves.

St. Francis Center is proud to be part of the LyftUp Alliance. Access to essential services like groceries is currently difficult for many of our guests, and something as simple as a ride to and from a food pantry can make all the difference.

With the unemployment rate soaring due to COVID-19, we are seeing more guests than ever before who are experiencing food insecurity. Our pantry program is designed to provide grocery boxes to recipients that will last for a week, but what happens if a family or individual is unable to take or carry everything that they need? A large percentage of our guests use public transportation to get back and forth from our pantry program. We have heard stories about how difficult it is for them to carry all the necessary groceries back with them, or how they aren’t allowed to take everything with them on public transport. Now, more than ever, it is essential that our guests not only have access to fresh groceries, but are able to take everything they need home with them. This is why something as simple as a ride is so important.

This past Saturday, we were excited to see many of our guests utilizing the #LyftUp service to get to and from our pantry program for free. One guest, in particular, was Maria, a senior. Throughout the pandemic, Maria has been self-isolating at home with her son, but when he went back to be with his family, she had no way of getting groceries. Maria called St. Francis Center to see if she could get her groceries early as she couldn’t wait another week until the senior pantry program on the following Friday. Besides public transportation, she had no other way to get to SFC. With LyftUp’s program, our staff was able to call a Lyft and work with the driver to pick Maria up at her home. Once she arrived here, her amazing Lyft driver, Raymond, suggested adding SFC as a stop on the ride so she wouldn’t have to wait for another Lyft to pick her up. Maria received her groceries and then Raymond was able to drop her off at home. All in all, the roundtrip ride to SFC took a quick 15 minutes! Thank you Lyft and all of the amazing Lyft drivers (shoutout to Raymond!) who are helping our most vulnerable communities get access to essential groceries.

To find out more about the LyftUp program click here!

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