Local non-profit begins week-long initiative to help Columbia seniors
COLUMBIA - On Monday, more than 100 volunteers began the week-long effort to deliver more than 5,700 meals to raise money to help those in need.
Meals on Wheels Columbia is hosting its primary fundraiser for the year, Big Wheels, to help fund the non-profit.
Meals on Wheels is delivering $10 meals from Panera Bread, with half of the proceeds going directly to the organization.
The non-profit has been delivering hot meals to seniors older than 70, and adults needing assistance with meal preparation for longer than 45 years.
"Our goal is that we would be able to serve people that are hoping to age gracefully in their home," said JoNetta Weaver, executive director for Meals on Wheels. "We can provide the food that comes in at noon each day, a hot meal, with them and they're able to say at home."
Weaver said around 30 percent of Meals on Wheels' funds comes from the Big Wheels fundraiser. The other funds come from client fees and private donations.
"We are front-loading the whole year to be able to fund them," Weaver said.
The other 51 weeks of the year, volunteers cook meals in the basement of Truman VA Hospital and deliver them to more than 280 seniors needing assistance.
"I feel we receive just as much as our clients, only a different kind of reward, getting to know our clients and being able to assist them," said a Meals on Wheels driver.
Weaver said there's a 3 or 5 day lunch option, as well as an added boxed dinner if necessary.
"Those meals are planned by a registered dietitian, they are for a month long. Those are hot meals delivered by the home," said Weaver.
For more information about Meals on Wheels, you can visit their website at https://mealsonwheelscolumbia.org/.