Congregate Lunch Program

The purpose of the nutrition program is to assist Maryland’s older citizens to reduce hunger and food insecurity, and to promote socialization and independent living.  Each meal complies with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and each meal provides one-third of the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) established by the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science.  The congregate meal program is funded under Title III-C of the Older Americans Act of 1965.  

Congregate nutrition services, including emergency meal kits, are available to persons 60 years and older and their spouses, regardless of their age.  Voluntary, anonymous contributions are requested from eligible program participants for meals. Individuals who do not contribute are not denied meals.  

Participant contributions are used to offset the meal cost, increase the number of meals served, and to provide supportive services directly related to the nutrition program, such as nutrition screenings and education.

Volunteers, regardless of age, who provide services during the meal hours, may be offered a meal on the same basis as meals provided to eligible participants.  Guests under 60 years old may be served meals at the full cost of the meal. 

As of September 1, 2014 the full cost of the regular meal is $4.10 and $5.39 for special meals. Participants are requested to contribute as generously, up to the cost of the meal, to ensure the viability of this important service.

Meal participants must make lunch reservations one week in advance.  People who do not make reservations are not guaranteed a meal.  For further information, cont