Fullerton Meals on Wheels, the organization that provides meals for homebound residents, has been affected by a lack of volunteers. “We are double-delivering on Mondays because we had a shortage of volunteers,” Program Director Pam Tice said. “Right now we are closed Tuesdays.”
Up to 14 volunteers are needed per delivery day. It takes about an hour and a half to deliver to 12 people. Volunteers drive their own vehicles and follow strict CDC protocols. Each volunteer is given a route and insulated containers that control the temperature of the meals.
City Councilmember Ahmad Zahra has been a volunteer for two years. “I meet some of our most vulnerable citizens who benefit directly from this service,” Zahra said. “I feel like it makes a real difference in their lives.”
Contributions come from local businesses and service organizations like the Assistance League of Fullerton, which donates the office space. Family trusts and grants are also among the highest donors. Aid also comes from individuals. John and Kerry Phelps donated a year’s worth of the Kate Farms Komplete Nutritional drinks that are often used by hospitals.
The program provides low-cost meals to over 80 clients and special consideration with regards to nutrition is given to each well-balanced meal. There are meals specifically created for people who have more challenging health issues such as diabetes. Food is prepared at St. Jude Medical Center and OC Meals on Wheels. The cost of meals is under $10 per day, however, assistance is available for those who qualify.
Recipients of the program agree on how valuable it is to them.
After a car accident a year ago, Elizabeth decided it was best to give up her driver’s license. “Meals on wheels has been wonderful since I don’t drive,” she said. “The meals get me through the week.”
Ralph served four years in the Navy doing three tours in Vietnam. He has had many health challenges including losing a leg. “[Meals on Wheels] has really been a great service,” he said. “The food could use some salt, but I know it’s healthier without it and I can’t complain.”
To sign up for this service or to volunteer, contact MOW at (714) 871-2200 or email them at office@MOWfullerton.org. Donations may be made via www.mowfullerton.org or send to 223 West Amerige Ave, Fullerton, CA 92832
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