As a response to the COVID-19 crisis CCLD led in collaboration with St Bricins Secondary School Belturbet, Cavan County Council, Civil Defence, An Garda Siochana, the Family Resource Centres, the GAA, Cavan PPN and a number of community groups commenced a Food Emergency Response Initiative with the establishment of Food Centres and a Meals on Wheels service. The initiative was aimed at those experiencing food poverty and vulnerable people cocooning. Cavan PPN promoted the services through its extensive network. CCLD co-ordinated the logistics of both sourcing and receiving food donations (mostly locally sourced) as well as from Food Cloud in Dublin while Civil Defence and An Garda Siochána delivered the food parcels to each household. The other partners acted as area based Food Centres for receiving bulk food. Also placed into packs were other donations such as books, activity packs, information leaflets etc. The Food Centres were located in various towns and this allowed for a county wide provision of food.
This Covid initiative has been replicated in 21 counties, featured on national media and was presented by the OECD as a case study of best practice on how communities are responding to the crisis. The judges were particularly impressed with the speed and scale of the initial emergency response and the fact that the knowledge gained during this response has now resulted in a sustainable programme being developed to assist vulnerable local families in the future.