Aging in Style with Lori Williams
Aging in Style with Lori Williams

Episode · 1 month ago

065. Everything you need to know about Meals on Wheels


Meals on Wheels has been more important than ever the past couple years as seniors have isolated during the pandemic. But what is Meals on Wheels, and how does it work? And how do you or your loved ones qualify?

Michelle McMahon is the executive director of Meals on Wheels in Denton County, Texas, and she’s joined by Senior Nutrition Program Manager Kristine Herrera to discuss all the ins and outs of Meals on Wheels.

You’ll learn:

-How it’s funded

- How seniors qualify

- How often meals are delivered

- What’s included

- How the volunteer program works

And more.

It’s a labor of love that does more than deliver meals. Thanks to generous donations and grants, seniors not only receive a nutritious, warm meal – they receive friendly check-ins from members of the community. This provides relief to family members of seniors who may not get to see their loved ones as often as they’d like.

Topics discussed:

- Meals on Wheels

- Congregate meals

- Funding / donating to Meals on Wheels

- Volunteer work

- Senior community

- Senior socialization

Takeaways from this episode:

- Meals on Wheels is free for seniors and mainly funded through the federal government’s Older Americans Act. But to serve more people, they rely on supplemented donations and grants.

- Seniors qualify for delivery when they’re over age 60, live alone, and are homebound. Social workers also do a candidate assessment when they receive a senior referral.

- Senior living facilities sometimes host congregate Meals on Wheels, which offers an enriching experience providing socialization to a population that’s often lonely.

- Meals and Wheels gives peace of mind to distant family members because sometimes the delivery is the only contact seniors have.

- Senior Paws is a donation-based program that partners with Meals on Wheels of Denton County to deliver dog and cat food to home bound seniors with pets.

To find out more about volunteering with Meals on Wheels in Denton County, call:


Visit the website to learn more or donate:

Senior Paws:

Episode 14: Finding purpose as we age:

To suggest a topic, be a guest or to support the podcast please email

For more senior resources and to sign up to the newsletter please visit:

What I can tell you is whenyou speak with the volunteers and there are different stories that led them to getto volunteering, what I hear, I'm thinking one person I spoke with shelost her husband's after many, many years of marriage and this was a therapyfor her to get out there and make a difference for seniors and she saidI said, thank you so much for all you do. She said no, no, thank you, because that saved me from the pain of mymorning and gave me purpose and fulfilled me. She said, I get so muchmore than I get. It's not even funny. It's just an incredibleexperience. So I think people, when they know the feeling of helping asenior so directly in such an important way, it's going to give back so muchmore than they ever realized as possible. Welcome to aging in style with me, Larie Williams. I'm an optimist by nature and I believe you canfollow your dreams at any age. My grandmother's journey with dementia ignited a passionin me to work with seniors. I've spent the past thirteen years learning aboutseniors and aging. In my mid S, I followed my own dream and foundedmy company, where I use my expertise to help seniors locate housing andresources. On this podcast we cover all aspects of aging. Joanna's each weekto meet senior living experts and inspirational seniors who are following their dreams. Thefact is, we're all aging, so why not do it in style?Hi, welcome to today's this episode of aging in style with Laurie Williams.Today we are at meals on wheels and Denton County and I have been wantingto do this podcast on meal zone wheels because it's so important and it's neara dear to my heart, as my grandmother was a meal zone wheels recipientback in the early s and I serve as a board member on meal ZonWheelston County. So that's where we're going to talk about today. We're goingto take the mystery out of what meal zone wheels is, and I knowa lot of people kind of have an idea about meals on wheels but they'renot a hundred percent sure how it works, how you get meals, how youcan volunteer. So we're going to cover all of that today. Soour guests are Michelle McMahon, who's the executive director of the program She's workedin nonprofit for over twenty five years. She worked in mental health field asclinical director and taught as an adjunct professor of psychology for ten years. She'sa graduate degree in psychology and Abd, PhD and Psychiatric Counseling and she movedinto nonprofit administration serving people with disabilities, children and seniors, and she hasworked here at meals on Wheelsdon county since June two thousand and eighteen as theexecutive director. She is originally from New Jersey and moved to Texas and twothousand and seventeen. And then we're also talking with Christine Herrera, who isthe senior nutrition program manager. She is the social worker for resm social work. For twenty years. She worked in child protective services and mental health allthe she has a bachelor and social work...

...and she's been with meals on wheelsdent county since two thousand and nine, for twelve years, and she's originallyfrom Germany and worked in New Mexico and has been in Texas now for fourteenyears. So welcome, ladies, welcome. Thank you so much for having ustoday. Well, I'm so glad we all are here and I'm veryexcited about today's show. So, Michelle, let's start with what inspired you towork with seniors? That's an easy question for me. I had lostmy very dear mom back in two thousand and eighteen and I had seen theimpact it had on my dad. They had been married for fifty three yearsprior to a passing, and I saw the impact on him on every level, associate, economically, socially, emotionally, just in every way, and Iwanted to do something to help other people like my dad. Fortunately,I was able to be there for my dad, but there are so manyseniors in this position that do not have family members. It's shocking because,you know, those of us who are close with our parents and our grandparentscan imagine then being left alone with no family. But that is the casefor so many seniors where there's so much geographic movement these days and people arefarther away from each other, so it's not like it used to be.You know that people have that immediate assistance. So I wanted to do something tohelp people like my dad. I've met people like my dad when I'vebeen out to the congregate sites and talk to people about their stories and Isee my father and so many of the seniors that were serving and I justthink about, what if that was my dad, what if that was mymom, and what can I do to help them and also to help thechildren of those seniors, because I know how I felt. Anybody who helpedmy dad touched my heart. So I wanted to help the the children grandchildrenof the seniors that we serve to feel like there's somebody else that cares andis helping and supporting them on the scene. So I'm very blessed that I've beenable to do that and it's healed my heart. Every day that Icome to work is in honor of my mom, and so that's my story. I love that. That's beautiful and Christine went inspired you to work withseniors or work with well, working with sears kind of fell into my lab. Moved from New Mexico to Texas and of course, naturally I was lookingfor for a job and applied it span and had the end of you ownand then found out, well, this is with seniors and it's mealsone wheelsand it just felt right. So and ever since there. I know thatmade a good choice. Working with seniors. I who work with children and shallprotective services. I worked with adults with various mental illnesses and the kindof work can be very stressful and can be very takes a lot out ofyou, and working with seniors it's just the blessing and you can always see, whenever I come for the meetings or when we have an event, thepassion Shin that both of you ladies show.

It's obvious that you're we're supposed tobe and you're making a difference and love what you do, which iswhat it's all about. Thank you so much sure. And so tell us. What is the history of meals on wheels like? How did it start? Just kind of give us a little background on what it is. I'llgive you the very simple points. Obviously the story is filled with a lotmore details than what I'm giving but just to give a basic history. Inone thousand nine hundred and thirty nine, during the Second World War, mealsand wheels actually started in Britain. Really, a lot of people don't know that. They think it's an American thing, but it started in Britain because peoplewere concerned about helping senior stay in their homes, but they just neededa bit of help in order to do so. So that's where this conceptstarted. It started in the United States in one thousand nine hundred and fiftyfour in Philadelphia. Same thing, a group of concerned citizens wanting to helptheir senior neighbors to be able to stay in their home and they needed justa bit of help to do so. And it's caught on since then andnow we have what we know as meals and whales America and we have maleson wheels in different agencies throughout the country at this point. But it actuallystarted in Britain, so a lot of people don't know that little us ofinformation. Yeah, fun fact. I like that. How is it funded? Also, wheels is fun of various sources and our program and I'm prettysure the programs are just saying the federal government, through the older American sack, is funding the majority of meals on wheels, but it's also that thestate helps, the community helps by donations and volunteering and grants, various grants. So we are always every year, out and above looking for grants thatcould apply to our program so we have more funding so we can serve moreseniors, because funding that comes from the federal level understate level has a cap. So so many meals per years. So accounts down, so sold,so many seniors. But we want to serve more seniors. We want todo more. So it's kind of up to us to hit the pavement,find, go out and find find resources, finds, funding sources, find donors, find volunteers. Great and have galas like we just recently had,which was a lot of fun. Will Post some pictures about that. Thefundraising part is very important and what's Nice about those fundraisers is it has twocomponents. It has obviously raising funds to help support the program and just alsoto educate people about males and wheels and how they can get involved. Andour funding sources are so varied. It's a very unique mixture of things becauseour primary funding sources, Christine said, is the federal government, older AmericansAct. But we have to work hard to supplement that in order to reallyfulfill the true cost of every meal, and donations are such an important inpart of it. So that's why it's very important for us to connect tothe community and see that they have our...

...well and making sure that we serveour seniors. Yes, and actually right now in November, December and January, our local Subaru dealer or the Subaru Dealership Nash nationwide. It's called sharedleof and we do little things just to earn shares and then we get ashare of the seats that they make seven cars. So that's actually what we'reworking on right now. So it's kind of interesting the different things that wedabble into to increase out funding. Yeah, that's great. Is it funded,or is meals on wheels? Is it different state to state or isit pretty much the same? I think it is pretty much the same stateto state, because I do remember when I was still living in New Mexicothey had meals on wheels program. I don't know how they were funded,but I am pretty sure they were fund and just like us, okay,but I seen them delivering Monday through Friday lunch the seniors. So I thinkin a nutshell, I think we're all the same. Yeah, the olderAmerican fact is a federally funded program. So across the United States they're fundingthe basic concept of meals and wheels, the home delivered meals, and then, of course, some agencies offer the congregate meals, which is offering mealsat sites like senior centers, for example, where people can come together and socializeand share a meal together. So there's are the two main ways thatmales and wheels serves the community. And nonprofits take on the males and whalesprogram and they might implement it a little bit differently, but the basics ofthe program is the same. Helping seniors live in their home, volunteer sir, the male the daily check in, all the basic components are the same. And meals on wheels America. If you check out their website, theydescribe the basics of what it is and that's something that's implemented pretty consistently acrossthe board. But in terms of how people get their funding and how peoplereach out to the community, that is varied according to whatever agencies deliver thoseservices. Okay, Great. So if you're a senior or you have asenior loved one and you feel like they need meals on wheels at this wouldbenefit their life. How do they qualify? Well, here indented or in astate of Texas, they have to be sixty and older and that's actuallythrough the older American Act. They have to be homebound, which means thatthey just cannot just hop in your car and go to the grocery store.But we still consider a senior home board. Even if you would come pick upyour dad, he's still homebod because he needs to your assistance to goplaces, to the doctors or to the store. They have to live bythemselves or have nobody coming to the home that can provide for them. Butthat's also a gray area. Seniors could be living with somebody that is reallynot providing for them. So that's why we have social workers, case workers, that go once. Once a referrals...

...mate, they will go out anddo an assessment on our seniors and that's when they see the home and that'swhen they can see the circumstances and our world is not black and white andour seniors lives as not black and white. We get to know the seniors beforewe decide to qualify them or not soon. So if you're thinking maybeyour mom might qualify, you just would call. Yes, then an assessmentwould be scheduled with the social worker is determine if they're going to qualify ornot. Correct Great. And then how do the conger get meals differ becauseI know that we have some incovey senior apartments where congregate meals are brought thereand maybe some of those people are still able to drive. Is that adifferent program or? Okay, it's different qualifications. Basically, the only qualificationsfor you to be able to eat congregate meals as you have to be sixtyyear older. So once you reach to sixty mile more, you are readyto eat congregate meals. And we serve congregate meals at senior centers and inthe past it was only senior centers, but as some older adults getting aremore active, they don't eat as much at the senior centers congregate meals anymorelike they used to. Now we found actually a new niche and also seniorliving housing apartment. So it's not necessarily that those seniors are in a nursinghome. It's not. It's just sixty and older senior housing. A lotof the senior housings income bay. So so some of our horror seniors livein those housing. What is so great about congregate meals is that the seniorsare actually get out of their apartments and they get to mingle with their peers. And it took me a few years at Nelsen wills to understand the impactthat really has on the seniors to get out and mingle with other seniors,because when we started one congregate side here in Denton, the feedback I gotjust after a few weeks, oh I didn't even know I have so manynice neighbors. I maybe met one in the mail box and but now Igot to talk to them and we eating together and all of a sudden westarted Monday being go and Wednesday chess club. So also administration at the senior housingapartments told me is that we have never seen so many seniors actually nowspending time in our community rooms, to community rooms. You could hear itgoing there. There was nobody really meeting there and now because of our complicatemeals. So I'm thinking we enriching congregut seniors by giving them nutrition and socializationdefinitely enriches their lives and through through both programs, whether they're receiving a mealat home, they are getting that social aspect to because of the volunteer whois delivering the meal. Someone is seeing...

...them, they're talking to someone,they're not just sitting there by themselves and then, like you, so withthe congregate meals, which are different, where they come out of their apartments, they dine together in one area. They're making friendships and and building relationshipsand starting groups and Games and card games or whatever. So that's that's amazing. People often underestimate the importance of the socialization component of the congregate meal programbecause we think about meals on wheels providing that meal, which is very importantfinancially nutritionally for those seniors. But what we don't understand is that one outof four seniors say they feel lonely, and so that's something important for usto address, because the only list leads to all sorts of things like depressionand lack of a purpose, a lack of a motivation to do anything,to get out of the house. And so that congregate meal program and whichis their lives in so many different ways. And you can just see when youvisit a congregate meal site that everyone, you know people, have this pictureof seniors just, you know, feeling hungry and depress but when yousee them in these congret sites, they're laughing, they're making jokes. It'sactually a hoot for me to always go and spend some time with them.They uplift me. So it's just a wonderful way to bring the program Ithink I favor the congregate meal sites in the sense that I can actually seethe smiles on their faces together and and know that this is making a differencein their lives. With home delivered meals it's a brief visit with a volunteerand I think volunteers always feel so torn because they're there for a moment andthey have to move on because they have other people on their route and soit's a very minimal contact. It's better than nothing, but the optimal situationwould be at these congregate sites where they can truly connect with other people ona more meaningful lew I also wanted to share really quick something I just foundout here recently. So I know nobody wants to talk about covid anymore,but as an example of the impact that congregate meals made on on some seniorsat these housing apartments, one senior just recently told me. She said ifit wouldn't have been for the conjugate program I wouldn't have known who I cancall, who I can interact, who I can ask for how if Iwouldn't have to conjugate program because they swapped that phone numbers and they made friends. And when we had no congugate meals because of Covid, they knew eachother, they made friends and they can. So how you doing today? Youdoing better? Are you feeling okay? Good, oh, your daughters gettinggroceris you think you can bring me? Those connections would have never been madeif we would never start that conjugate program at so they had made thoseconnections prior to Covid, right, and then the meals had to stop,obviously because of Covid, but they had these friendships already. So, yeah, what a blessing now is definitely question.

People ask me a lot to geton a meals on wheels. I know you can spend it better government, but is there a cost involved for the seniors and for their family andwhat does that cost? We don't charge for the meals. The meals arefree of charge for the seniors and that's what this assessment comes in. Sothey qualify. There's no charge. Now we do accept donations because some seniorsare little resistance. Oh, I don't want to help from the government andI'm not taking no hand out. So usually I can use our donation programs. That's okay, that's fine. Once a month you're going to get yourmenu and you're going to get a donation envelope and the suggestion donation premier istwo dollars. So if you want to give, that's fine. If youcan't, that's fine too, but it helps some really proud seniors to goahead and accept our help. That's wonderful. How often our meals received power theydelivered. They are delivered daily, Monday through Friday, and at ourprogram we delivered between ten thirty and twelve and they are delivered by volunteers and, like Michelle said, that's sometimes for some of the seniors they only contactthat they have, which that's why we call our program some more than ameal, because it is a meal and a friendly check up. You know, how do you is nowadays these seniors living in in senior apartment that theywere on a waiting list and now they live in Denton and the son orthe daughter live in Austin, far away. So we give them also a pieceof mind because we checking in on mom and dad and if our volunteerssee a change in the senior, they will call us and we have theircontact information in our of ours and we will call the daughter in Austin asas somebody needs to check on on mom because she seems really depressed or shelooks like she lost a lot of weight. Something is going on, because ourseniors, they're so proud they don't want to call their kids for help. All they're busy and they are very I don't want to bother them.Oh, she's just going to worry about I'd be fine. I'd be fine. And sometimes really family members don't find out about that there's something going onwith the senior until we call them. And for all the sons and daughtersout there, I mean I will tested that personally. When I call mydad and he doesn't answer the phone, I'm on pins and needles until Ihear from him. So, knowing that somebody's checking in on him daily,if a day or two goes by, I'm not going to have too muchanxiety because I know at least someone's checking in and they will notice things likethey're interacting and having that brief socialization, but they're also looking around and theyknow what to look for and if they see any red flags, I knowthat I'll be notified. So that just gives peace of mind to everyone andalso helps to get assistance to the senior when they might not even know thatthey need the help. Absolutely. What's actually included in a meal? Well, it's a protein. Maybe chicken made... work that day. We havea different meal every day. Every month. We have a site, which issome sort of starch, potatoes, Hasta, then we have a vegetable, whatever's on the menu, and then this comes with a piece of breador roll and a dessert, and then our seniors have a choice of milk. Okay, so it's a war meal, which is a lot of people don'trealize that. I've had people say, is it just like a sandwich andan apple or something? It is a freshly cooked meal, freshly cookedmeal daily. Yeah, wonderful. How many seniors are you serving now inDent County on the program? Well, last fiscal year we served over Onezeroseniors and we actually served a hundred and Fourteenzero wheals. Wow, that's amazing. So volunteers. You're probably always looking for volunteers always. So tell usabout the volunteer program how that works. If someone wants to volunteer, whatwould they do and what what's involved in it? Right? If a volunteerwants a volunteer face, they usually call us and we have volunteer trainings onceor twice a month. It depends on how many volunteers needed to be trained. Once they trained, we run a background check on every falling there.This is very important because we want to make sure that our seniors to safeand people that are safe con visit our seniors. Then put the first timethey will shadow another volunteer on the route that they are signed and the nexttime they will do that by themselves. Okay, how many meals do theytypically deliver in a in a day? I guess it could be as littleas only ten meals and they couldn't be up to eighteen or nineteen meals aday that are delivered. And Right now, during Covid we added a lot ofnew clients on the program because we wanted seniors to be able to isolateat home. It's an ugly word. Yeah, I know, we noneof it, like ourd isolate anymore, but but it was necessary. Sure, right. So we added a lot of seniors that maybe normally still outand about right, but they wanted to stay home and we wanted to reducethe occurrences of them having to go to the grocery store and maybe could getinfected. So we added a lot of seniors to the program. Okay,and if someone's interested in volunteering and we'll put the information, I do tocontact, but they would just contact meals almost don't county, talk to someoneand get the paperwork and everything and see if there's a route available. It'sa very informal and fast process. That okay, very good. I canadd a note on just soldt hearing, because it seems a bit intimate datingto volunteer for such a program. But what I can tell you is whenyou speak with the volunteers and there are different stories that led them to getto volunteering, what I hear, I'm thinking one person I spoke with,she lost her husband's after many, many...

...years of marriage and this was atherapy for her to get out there and make a difference for seniors and shesaid, I said thank you so much for all you do. She saidno, no, thank you, because that saved me from the pain ofmy mourning and gave me purpose and fulfill me she said, I get somuch more than I get. It's not even funny. It's just an incredibleexperience. So I think people, when they know the feeling of helping asenior so directly in such an important way, it's going to give back so muchmore than they ever realized. As possible and definitely something as senior cando. Do you have a lot of seniors who volunteer to do real somewheels too, about to deliver? You'd be surprised. Most of our volunteersare seniors or older adults right. A lot of people can't wait to gointo retirement and then they finally in retirement for a couple months and then they'relike, oh, this is boring. Yeah, so so they start volunteeringfor us. Gives some purpose, gets them out of the house. Soyeah, most of our volunteers are actually older at those and seniors. That'sgreat because it is actually something we talked on the podcast a lot about thishaving purpose at any age, no matter what your age is, and whata wonderful way to get back and help others. There's another program which isnot funded by the government and this is just something here in Gent County whichI absolutely love and I want to want you to tell us about the programbut it's called senior pause. Senior pause, and we started this many years agowhen we went out to one of our seniors homes to do the annualreassessment, I saw our food trace on the floor. Why are they onthe floor? That house is not that messy. So I couldn't help myself. I have to ask and she goes, Oh, no, I share mymeal with I don't remember the dog's name, but her little dog.HMM. I was like really, says, yeah, I can't get the dogfood to my house. Well, it did. Just makes sense ifyou think about it. Now we are serving seniors that are homebound, thatcan get out, they can come for themselves. No more. How arethey gonna get the dog by Dolphin? Yeah, Jane, very heavy,yeah, ready, yeah, yes, and afford it too. Yes.So we went back to the office and we actually talked to our board ofdirectors during that time and said that has to be something we can do.First of all, animals don't need to eat food that is meant for humanconsumption and we want our seniors to eat their whole meal because that might bethe only meal they have all day, as sad as it yeah, sothat's when senior pause was born. So senior pause, every third Saturday ofthe months, we delivered dogging cat food to our seniors that are also receivingfrom the lived meals. Now, this...

...program has no federal, state,any government money, so we have been so fortunate to get donations from thecommunity. They bring us the dog food, they bring us to cat food,or they bring us a check and say by what you need, andthat's what we have been doing for the last fourteen, fifteen years. Butit's it's all. It's a labor of love that everybody here loves animals.It's talked about the loneliness that seniors experience and for all the pet lovers outthere, you're going to understand firsthand dogs and cats. They give us somuch love, so much companionship and of course we want to support the animalsthat are supporting the seniors and ensuring that the seniors get the nutrition in theirown meals, of course, and that the animals get the pet food thatis better for them as well. And the outpouring from the community is amazingbecause, again, we cannot emphasize enough there's no funding for this program.It's donation and volunteer based and even us here at meals and Wilsdon County,we do this out of the pure love for the purpose and the mission ofsenior pause and we are so happy to do it. It makes the differenceand that's what keeps us going. I'm hoping at some point where a whatI find more funding for this program on a regular, consistent basis, butright now we're just relying on the community and they've been coming through for us. Yeah, absolutely, and we actually have a fundraiser that's about to startover the over Christmas, so December first it's going to be starting and we'recalling it Santa Pause, a Santa for a senior pet and list, andwe're going to put all this information out there. But the items that youneed? Yes, you want to tell us. I know it's unopened.It's new dog and cat fee bags, but what size, because I can'tbe too big. We were too heavy. Yes, usually we prefer six orten pound bags because, like we mentioned earlier, some of our volunteersour seniors and we don't want them to have to try to get a thirtypound bag of dog food into their car and also it's easier to divvy itup because some of US seniors have two cats or three cats, so it'seasier to do the math on what we want to bring. It's easier tostore. Also, since the holiday season is coming up, we also liketo give them a little bit extra besides to food, so treats and ballsand maybe some doc and kept toys, Leeches, dog bedding or gift cardsto pet code to a bit or a groomer. And when I just setbits, we're really hoping and we're striving and we're working hard on we reallynot just the senior post program that we deliver food to the seniors. Wereally would like to connect with some veterinarian services so because you can get upand get the food, you can't get out to get the shots or thehealthcare that you need for you pets.

And I know just right about mobilenarian sort. I mean just thinking would be so lonely if we could justcommit with one of them and they would have with our seniors and we couldget donations to funt that that we is so awesome as an expect for ourprogram and make sure their animals are saying healthy, because they can come directlyto them and hopefully donate that service as well. And you know, foodcost is enough, but that Mary and costs our astronomical or any pet lover, we know that firsthand. So any help with that, because food isjust the minimal that we're doing, but there's so much more we can doand you know, gift cards will take any types of donations on that list. But the beauty of the gift cards is if our pet food shed isfull at the moment, we have gift cards that we can use to replenishthat supply when we need it, because there are months that we do runlow and it would be nice to have those gift cards to rely on thatare there because, you know, we do have a limit to what wecan fit in the shed. We love when it's full, but we wouldlove the insurance for those months where it's not so full that we can accessthose gift cards. So that's why that would be a really preferred donation ifpossible, and it's something we could also give directly to the seniors so theycan purchase something as they need from the pet store. Okay, yeah,I know that sounds great. Probably even Amazon gift cards would be good totrap. I can deliver right to you. Oh my goodness, absolutely convenient.That is we want to provide as much assistance to the seniors so theydon't have to leave the house and go make that trip. So Amazon isbeautiful in that way. Yeah, perfect. So I always like to, aswe end the discussion, talk about inspirational seniors in your life. Sowho wants to start first and share their most inspirational senior? Well, youknow, I mentioned my dad. My mom is definitely as much as aninspiration as my dad. I do this every day for her and I knowthat she is so proud because I am doing something. When you talk abouthow our passion comes out and the more meetings, it's because I just lovewhat I do. I'm so lucky that I get to do this every daylike it doesn't feel like work, it just feels like a gift every singleday. I do this in honor of my mom and I do this inhonor of my dad because he is somebody who is so strong and his Tommyhow to be so strong and he's one of those seniors that we talked abouttoo proud to ask for help, not even from me, especially not fromhis daughter. So He's taught me a lot about how to reach out tothose seniors that are reluctant to ask for help, because he's always made iton his own. He's very proud of US independence and he's taught me somuch and those lessons I will have for the rest of my life and everyday I take what I learned from him and I apply it towards just beinga better person and and being better at...

...serving the community. So my parentshave taught me so much and they are in my heart every single day andit's so obvious your passion shines through than you absolutely well, when I startedit span, I started actually with volunteer work. Working with the volunteers wasmy first job and I will never forget to volunteers, a husband and wifein their mid s running a route every week, sometimes twice a week,because you could always count on them. He would drive and she goes tothe door and I asked the one time, as you ninety four, but wewhy are you? They're just like where? Will you not give itUS purpose? And we are blessed that we are still out in about andwe still physically able to do this and we want to do this as longas we are physically able to do that. Because they're in the S and nowthey see seniors that are very sick and not mobile and can't, can'tget around anymore, in the eight hundred and sixty, early S. right. I just thought to myself, and I'm only in my s, butI talked to myself. So, Oh my God, I want to benine, four hundred and ninety five and still in that shape and still havebeen and being able to give back. Yeah, so that is an inspirationto me that that's an a that's just amazed as a right for me too. Yeah, I love that. Those are wonderful stories. Okay, sonow how can people are listeners out there? How can they contact you to volunteer, to donate or just see it they qualified for meals on wheels,since their number they should call go on a website, which is the bestway. All of the above. We try to give a lot of avenuesfor people to reach out to us. But you know, unlike a lotof places where you call and you don't get connected to a person, youcan get connected to a real person here. So you can do it the oldfashioned way, pick up the phone and call us at the I canget the numbers, sure, two, three eighty two, two, two, two and four and just dialing to meals on wheels. Or you cango on the website wwwomoh WDC DOT org. That stands for meals on wheels DentCounty. Great and we will put all this information out there too,and you can also find it on my website, which is Lorie Williams seniorServicescom. But I want to thank you both for doing this. I've wantedto do this for a while and I think it's been a lot of andto share this information. Sir, you're welcome. Is there anything else I'llwant to leave us with? Well, I just hope, hope, callus, call us, call us. We need volunteers. Like I saidearlier, we added a not a lot of new seniors, which means consequencelywe need more volunteers, please. If... have an our own, it'sand only takes an hour a week. Yeah, that's a good point.It's not like you're spending, you know, five hours a day or something.Some people do it it their lunch prints. Oh well, yeah,so call us please and help us so we can grow to program we cansort of more seniors, because without our volunteers, all this wouldn't be possible. There the backbone of a program and and the donations, of course,make it possible as well. So a lot of people want to give uptheir time, some people want to give it their money. There's many waysto help and to give and even if you just want to learn more aboutwhat we do, without making any promises, you can come and you we wouldlove to tell you more about what we do and share with the community. And even if you just learn a little bit about some of the issuesthat are out there. Part of our mission is to educate people about whatthe actual state of our seniors is intent county. So we're just happy toshare information as well as anything else. Okay, excellent. Thank you bothfor being guests. I appreciated you all right, thanks, guys. Willsee you next week, but by.

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