Day in the Life of a Meals on Wheels Volunteer

Day in the Life of a Meals on Wheels Volunteer

December 30, 2019 5 By William Morgan


>>FOR 45 YEARS, MEALS ON WHEELS HAS BEEN DOING EVERYTHING IT CAN TO KEEP THE AREA’S HOME BOUND CITIZENS FED.>>THEY’LL BE THE FIRST TO TELL YOU THEIR WORK WOULDN’T BE POSSIBLE WITHOUT THE HELP OF VOLUNTEERS AND TODAY’S DAY IN TE LIFE, SEAN RIDES SHOTGUN WITH OE OF THOSE VOLUNTEERS AS HE HELPS DELIVER A FRACTION OF THE 400 MEALS THEY PROVIDE DAILY.>>WITH A NAME WHEELS, IT’S NOT HARD TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THEY DO.>>WE SERVE MEALS TO HOME BOUND CITIZENS.>>KATIE IS THE VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR AT MEALS ON WHEELS. SHE SAYS THEY SERVE 200 CLIENTS TWO MEALS A DAY FIVE DAYS A WEEK WITH SOME OPTING FOR EXTRA MEALS FOR THE WEEKEND.>>WE ARE HELPING OUR NEIGHBORS IN OUR COMMUNITY, PEOPLE WHO HAE HAD RECENT HOSPITAL RELEASES, COMING OUT OF REHAB OR HAVE JUST AGED IN THEIR HOME AND THEY NEED SERVICES OR ARE UNABLE TO PREPAE HEALTHY MEALS ANY LONGER.>>FUNDING FOR THIS ENDEAVOR COMES FROM BOTH THE STATE AS WEL AS PRIVATE DONORS AND THEY RELY HEAVILY ON VOLUNTEERS TO GET THE MEALS DELIVERED.>>WE COULD SIMPLY NOT EXIST WITHOUT OUR VOLUNTEERS. THAT’S HOW OUR WHOLE ORGANIZATIN HAS RUN. WE HAVE 14 DIFFERENT ROUTES SERVING THIS AREA SO WE NEED AT LEAST ONE DRIVER PER ROUTE EVERY DAY. SO WE RUN WITH WITH ABOUT 80 TO 100 VOLUNTEERS EVERY WEEK THAT HELP US DELIVER THESE MEALS.>>BUT IN REALITY THOSE DRIVERS ARE DOING MORE THAN DELIVERING MEALS.>>THEY’RE ALSO MAKING SURE THAT THEIR CLIENT IS UP AND ACTIVE AD ALERT AND THAT THEY’RE DOING WEL AND THEY REPORT BACK TO US IF THEY’RE NOT. SO IT’S A DAILY SOCIAL INTERACTION THAT IS CRUCIAL TO THESE PEOPLE’S LIVES.>>WHY IS WHY VOLUNTEERS LIKE JUDY ARE SO IMPORTANT.>>THAT’S A WINDY ONE TODAY.>>IT IS. AND THIS IS MY CAR DOWN HERE AND I HAVE A METHOD.>>YOU HAVE A METHOD.>>I HAVE A METHOD.>>ALL RIGHT. YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE TO WALK ME THROUGH THIS METHOD.>>OKAY. TOOK ME SIX MONTHS TO FIGURE ON OUT. SO WHEN WE DO THIS WE HAVE TO COUNT OUR MEALS. TODAY I HAVE 12. I HAVE TO MAKE SURE I HAVE 12 OF THE BREAKFAST BAG AND 12 OF THE BROWN BAG.>>OKAY. I THINK I CAN COUNT TO 12. 12. ALL RIGHT. 12 BROWN BAGS.>>OKAY. AND I NEED — SO HOPEFULLY YOU’E GOT EIGHT OF THE BREAKFAST.>>EIGHT.>>WE CAN COUNT THEM WHEN WE GET IN THE — PROBABLY A GOOD IDEA YOU DOUBLE CHECK MY WORK.>>WE DOUBLE CHECKED AND JUDY SAID I GET A GOLD STAR.>>WHY DID YOU WANT TO GET INVOLVED WITH MEALS ON WHEELS? BECAUSE IT’S A GREAT PROGRAM. I MEAN, MY MOTHER USED TO DO IT. SHE WAS A VOLUNTEER AND THEN WHN SHE NEEDED HELP, MEALS ON WHEELS DELIVERED TO HER AND IT’S A WONDERFUL PROGRAM, YOU KNOW.>>SO WALK ME THROUGH THIS. WHAT DO WE DO? WE PULL UP TO THE HOUSE AND MAKE SURE WE HAVE EVERYTHING WE NEED TO DROP OFF. AND WE KNOCK ON THE DOOR. DO WE HAVE TO BE EXCITED OR HAPY TO SEE THEM.>>I ALWAYS AM EXCITED TO SEE THEM. AND MS. CLARK, LIKE I — MS. CLARK IS MY FIRST STOP. AND SHE IS A VERY SWEET LADY. I’VE GOTTEN TO KNOW HER FAIRLY WELL.>>KATIE GIVES EACH VOLUNTEER BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON EACH CLIENT SO THEY KNOW A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THEM BEFORE THEY GO TO THEIR HOUSE. LOAD ME UP. I’LL BE A CARRIER.>>REALLY? THANK YOU.>>CAN YOU REALLY GET ALL OF THAT?>>I THINK I CAN. I THINK SO. I THINK WE GOT IT.>>HEY, MS. CLARK.>>HI.>>HELLO, MS. CLARK. HOW ARE YOU.>>I’M DOING OKAY.>>I’M ACTUALLY HELPING JUDY OUT TODAY.>>MS. CLARK HAS BEEN USING MEAS ON WHEELS SINCE 2001. AND SAYS SHE LOVES THE ORGANIZATION.>>THE DRIVERS ARE NICE. EVERYTHING IS NICE.>>SO WHERE ARE WE GOING NOW?>>WE’RE GOING TO HE’S A NEW CLIENT. HE STARTED MAYBE A MONTH AGO. AND I HAVE SEVERAL CLIENTS IN THIS DEVELOPMENT.>>CAN I POINT OUT THAT THE SPED LIMIT IN THIS DEVELOPMENT IS 17 AND A HALF MILES AN HOUR?>>I LIVE IN A COMMUNITY.>>THAT’S SUCH AN ODD NUMBER.>>I THINK IT’S A DELAWARE THIN.>>17.5.>>IT’S REALLY STRANGE.>>MORNING.>>HOW ARE YOU?>>HOW’S IT GOING?>>GOOD TO SEE YOU, JULIA.>>NICE TO MEET YOU.>>GOOD. GOOD.>>FRED?>>FRED, I’M SEAN. I’M HELPING OUT TODAY. WE HAVE YOUR DELIVERY. HAND THIS TO JULIA.>>APPRECIATE IT.>>SO HOW ARE YOU DOING TODAY?>>TERRIFIC. ABSOLUTELY TERRIFIC.>>SOMETHING ELSE THAT MR. KRETCHMEN SAID IS TERRIFIC. MEALS ON WHEELS.>>I JUST THINK IT’S A FANTASTIC PROGRAM BECAUSE I WOULDN’T BE ABLE TO GO OUT SHOPPING TO GET ANYTHING TO EAT. I’D BE AS THIN AS A STRING LIKE YOU.>>WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT IT, WHAT YOU DO? WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT VOLUNTEERING WITH MEALS ON WHEELS.>>THE CLIENTS. IT’S THE CLIENTS. THEY’RE THE BEST.>>LAST YEAR MEALS ON WHEELS ESTIMATES THINK SERVED MORE THAN 110,000 MEALS WHICH IS AN IMPRESSIVE NUMBER, BUT WHEN YOU TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION THAT WAS JUST IN THE LEWES AREAS, IT BECOMES ALMOST HARD TO BELIEVE.>>OH, MY GOODNESS.>>THAT’S A LOT OF. SEAN. HE’S MISSED HIS CALLING.