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Leave it to them

University of Utah students offer free shopping for those most vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic.

graphic reads "Leave it to us Salt Lake City, safely shopping for seniors, EST. 2020"Leave it to Us is a national nonprofit “composed of a group of college students with the common goal of supplying senior citizens with their grocery/pharmacy needs during this global COVID-19 pandemic.” The free service started in Chicago and, thanks to a few University of Utah students, now has a Salt Lake City chapter.

“My friend Ben Haggard heard about it first and reached out to a few of us to see if we’d be interested in helping out,” said Brock Goldstrohm, a kinesiology major wrapping up his junior year at the U. “We all had a lot of free time after spring break and classes went online so we thought this would be a great way to spend our time and help our community.”

They reached out to the founder, Michael Arundel, who gave them tips and tools to get started. Once they had a webpage and Facebook page, they were ready to help. The hardest part, Goldstrohm said, has been getting the word out to those who could use their services.

“So far we’ve done about 30 or 40 grocery runs for about 15 people,” said Goldstrohm. “But we have nearly 30 volunteers, so we really just need to reach more people who could use our help.”

Anyone interested in having Leave it to Us help them can reach out to one of the five coordinators directly. The students will ask for a grocery or pharmacy list via email or text along with an address. A volunteer then leaves the items on the porch and collects the money left outside in an envelope. The service is free—all the customer pays for is the groceries.

“It’s been really fun so far,” said Goldstrohm. “Everyone is so appreciative and tells us they’ll tell all their neighbors.”

They have volunteers ready to shop throughout the Salt Lake Valley, and Goldstrohm said they don’t only want to help seniors—but anyone who may be immunocompromised or is considered at-risk for any reason during this pandemic.

Find contact information on their Facebook page or webpage here.