While a program that delivers hot meals to residents in Manchester is not in jeopardy of ending, according to those in charge of the program, more volunteers could help make meal deliveries easier.
Meals on Wheels provides a mid-day meal to Manchester residents who request it. Missy Anders, outreach specialist with the Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging (NEI3A), said volunteers are needed no matter how much time they can commit.
“Whether it’s once a week or once a month, you can make an impact on your community and a difference in an older person’s day, ensuring they get a hot, nutritious meal and a much-needed visit.”
It usually takes an hour-and-a-half to deliver meals throughout Manchester. They are prepared in Elkader and delivered by 10:45 a.m. to a meeting point in Manchester, where volunteers pick up the meals. Volunteers use their own vehicles for delivery.
Meals are delivered Monday through Friday.
“Volunteers usually bring in the meal to the person who has ordered it and make a friendly visit and check on them,” Anders explained.
Anders said there are currently six volunteers for Meals on Wheels deliveries in Manchester. “I would like to find five more,” she said. “This is a way you can help make a difference in your community.”
According to a press release from NEI3A, more than one million older adults in the United States, including an estimated 77,000 in Iowa, go hungry because they can not afford to buy food. While low-income adults suffer more, and often have to make choices between purchasing medication or food, hunger is not just an income issue. It is also a problem of access and care. Many older adults, who can afford it, lack the mobility to get and prepare their own meals or don’t have other support systems to help.
Anyone interested in volunteering with the program may contact Anders at 319-231-1623.