The Nutrition Program at Tulsa CARES offers a wide variety of services for clients. We pride ourselves in offering nutritious options in our pantry, as well as providing fresh fruits and vegetables, and essential household supplies. Weekly lunches, medical nutrition therapy, and nutrition education services are also large components of what we deliver, all for the health and well-being of persons living with HIV/AIDS and their families.
Occasional Food Assistance
For clients who only need food assistance occasionally due to unexpected bills or other urgent family needs, groceries can be accessed up to four times per year through the Nutrition Program. To access this benefit, clients simply need to visit the front desk and ask to complete an emergency grocery request form. To reduce waiting time, please call beforehand if possible. This benefit is reserved for clients who are not currently participating in our monthly grocery program.
Clients who access this program are able to privately shop in our grocery store, where they can select from a variety of healthier food items and essential household goods. By allowing clients to make their own food selections, clients are empowered to make healthy food choices that fit within their own food preferences while minimizing food waste. Eligibility for this program is based on need and/or medical diagnoses other than HIV that require ongoing nutrition education and support. For clients living in rural counties, please ask for a referral to our grocery voucher shopping program. If you’d like to donate food to our pantry, please use this guide for donations.
This program provides a great opportunity for Tulsa CARES’ clients to access on-site fresh fruits and vegetables twice per month. Any client who is case managed by Tulsa CARES may select a variety of fresh (and free!) produce for personal use during the afternoon market. For clients who are not case managed by Tulsa CARES, physicians may directly refer patients to our Farmer’s Market program. From May through September, the market also provides clients with produce donated by our friends at the Tulsa Farmer’s Market.
Weekly Client Meals
Each Tuesday, clients and their guests can gather over a fresh, tasty, and nutritious lunch. Meals are professionally prepared by a nationally-certified dietary manager. Entrée choices are guided by input from our clients and meals are always served with a salad, fresh fruit, and freshly-prepared vegetables. In addition to nourishment, the program provides clients with a chance to connect to others and to touch base with Care Coordinators. See the upcoming menu on our news and events page.
Our Dietitian and Dietetic Technician provide nutrition education, dietary analysis and individualized meal plans, as well as Medical Nutrition Therapy and body composition testing to any HIV+ individual within our service area with a Physician referral. Clients may also self-refer to the nutrition program. Our team specializes in HIV complications and medication side-effects, diabetes, kidney disease, and malnutrition Our program staff work with clients to find affordable, satisfying eating ideas to help clients feel better physically and mentally. Our services also include medical foods and nutritional supplements when appropriate.
Chronic Disease Management Farmer’s Market
This program is a medically-tailored component of our Farmer’s Market program. This program partners with HIV-positive patients and their health care providers to help support clients reach their health goals through optimal nutrition. Program participants receive customized recommendations and one-on-one support from our dietetics team. This program is designed to support HIV-positive patients with multiple health conditions or risk factors, such as diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease. This program includes group education, health screenings, dietary analysis, body composition testing and lab work screening throughout the program. Program participants must receive physician referral and meet eligibility requirements.