Big Wheels Deliver Meals
Big Wheels Delivered Meals April 19, 2016!
Elder Care Services’ Meals on Wheels program does more than just provide a daily, hot, nutritious meal to over 300 home-bound seniors Monday through Friday. In many cases, these Meals on Wheels volunteers are the only face those seniors may see all day. Imagine their excitement this month when the delivery was made by local dignitaries.
Tuesday, April 19th was Elder Care Services’ annual Big Wheels Deliver Meals event, sponsored by Melanie Lee of KIA Autosport. More than 50 local and state representatives, business leaders and dignitaries volunteered their time to deliver the most important of all basic needs, a hot nutritious meal, along with a safety check and a friendly, welcomed visit.
“You go up to these homes and sometimes you may be the only full conversation they have that day,” City of Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum said. “In some cases you may get a grandmother telling you about her grandchild, and in another case you may get a citizen that’s been meaning to tell you about that pothole.
First time participant Elmira Mangum, FAMU President accompanied Elder Care Services Board Member/ Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox on a meal route and gained a much greater appreciation of the significance this program has on our home-bound seniors. “I am so pleased that I was able to participate in the Big Wheels Deliver Meals event today. My heart jumped for joy at the mere fact that I was able to make a small contribution to improve a seniors’ quality of life. It was a heartwarming experience,” said Mangum.
“It was a wonderful, eye-opening experience,” said Mary Ann Lindley, Leon County Commissioner who participated along with fellow Leon County Commissioners John Dailey and Kristin Dozier.
Also joining the excitement were Department of Elder Affairs Secretary Verghese, Representative Alan Williams, City Commissioners Curtis Richardson and Nancy Miller, Tallahassee Police Department’s Major Audrey Smith, Captain Lawrence Revell, Captain Elizabeth Dillon, Captain Rod Young and Captain Steve Outlaw, Leon County Sheriff’s Office Lieutenant Grady Jordan, Elder Care Services Board Member/WTXL Anchor Abbey Maurer and Meteorologist Casanova Nurse, WCTV’s Art Meyers and Julie Montenero, Tallahassee Democrat Executive Editor William Hatfield, FSU Police Chief David Perry, the executive FAMU Leadership Team, United Way of the Big Bend President Katrina Rolle, Tallahassee State Bank CEO Matt Brown, Retired IMB executive Steve Evans, Second Harvest’s Dr. Jim Croteau, Candidate for Property Appraiser Doug Will, Elder Care Services’ Board of Directors F. James Wylie, Jr., Tommy Mills, Linda Bianco and Emeritus Board Member Tom Longerbeam.
These “Big Wheels” were treated to some heartfelt “thank you’s” from our seniors and given a glimpse of what Elder Care Services’ volunteers experience every day. It also provided them with a direct personal connection to our most vulnerable seniors and reinforced the importance and the health benefits of Elder Care Services Nutrition Program.
Serving Leon County residents age 60 and above, Elder Care Services’ Meals on Wheels program helps improve the quality of life of home-bound seniors by providing a nutritious meal that has been planned and overseen by a registered dietitian. At the 8 congregate meal sites we currently serve, those mobile seniors receive a well-balanced meal and have the opportunity to participate in many diverse programs offered at these centers.
Since 1971, over 656 volunteers have delivered Meals on Wheels five days a week to more than 300 home-bound seniors. On holidays, local churches and religious organizations provide that service so Elder Care Services staff can enjoy time with their families. We currently maintain 30 daily routes and 29 weekly frozen meal routes covering all areas of Leon County.
“We appreciate and are grateful to all who have generously supported the Meals on Wheels program over the years with their time and their financial contributions,” said Mark D. Baldino, Elder Care Services’ President/CEO. “Community support is instrumental in providing this service and will become even more important as the need for assistance increases with the impending growth of the aging population.”
Elder Care Services’ Meals on Wheels program serves over 160,000 meals annually. If you would like to volunteer to deliver Meals on Wheels, please call 850-921-5554 or visit www.ecsbigbend.org. We guarantee it will have a profound impact on your life.