At that point, the Society’s Conference Presidents agreed that the Council would provide funding to Senior Services to cover the cost of weekend meals. Additionally, the Council agreed to provide volunteeres to deliver the meals, 52 weekends per year. The Wichita Council of SVdP consists of over ten Catholic parishes (Conferences) in the Wichita-Hutchinson metropolitan area. Therefore, Blessed Sacrament's involvement is to deliver meals about four weekends per year.
"A picture of me and my family delivering Meals on Wheels", by Jillian Adams, 2012
Meals on Wheels is a program administered by Senior Services of Sedgwick County, and it provides meals to the homebound. About 40 years ago, the Wichita Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul learned that there wasn’t enough funding for meals to be delivered to those determined to have the greatest need for weekend meals. This meant that many homebound elderly or physically handicapped clients would probably struggle to receive a nutritious meal every weekend.
Currently, weekend meals are delivered to about 50 clients each day we deliver. Clients are grouped geographically to minimize wasted driving by volunteers. A map is created for each route, showing the address of each client, along with pertinent instructions (I.e., "client unable to come to door, please leave meal on table inside door").
The meals are prepared by professional staff at Senior Services. The menu changes each week, to provide variety. The meals typically include milk, pudding or jello, a small salad, bread and butter. The hot meal on April 7 for example, was pork roast, green beans and stuffing.
Getting ready to deliver meals!
Some of our recent volunteers include the Michael Leland family, the Shelley and Scott Walker family, the Daren Holovach family, the Rebecca Martin family, the Nora Rayl family, Dee and Dave Ziegert, the Gina Adams family, the Elizabeth Tackett family, and the Jennifer Hickerson family. Delivering Meals on Wheels is a great way for families to spend time together doing something positive for the community. This kind of service is one of the "Four Pillars of Stewardship".
Mary Short is the Blessed Sacrament Society of St. Vincent de Paul Meals on Wheels coordinator. She succeeded Mona Lewis, who succeeded long time coordinators Bill and Judy McKenzie.
Blessed Sacrament has a long tradition of supporting those in need and our support of Meals on Wheels is a great example of this. Thanks to the many, many families who have volunteered to deliver meals through the years!