The Weekend Meal Program for Seniors at the Elm Court Center in downtown Portland is an ongoing program. Meals on Wheels People serves and delivers 5,000 meals every weekday to seniors in three counties through 34 neighborhood dining rooms and Meals on Wheels service. We are open at only one location on weekends -- Elm Court. This location serves some of our most financially vulnerable seniors. Many of them live in small apartments or residential hotels without cooking facilities. If not for our meal program, they would have no access to fresh food on weekends.
Between July 1 and Sept. 15, 2013, we served 1,122 meals to seniors on the weekends. That conpares to 866 meals served in the same time period the previous year. Our annual client surveys indicate that more seniors than ever before are living at or below poverty. In 2009, the poverty rate among seniors was just 9%. In 2013, that number in Multnomah County (where our Elm Court Center operates) had jumped to 25%. Seniors are looking to Meals on Wheels People for fresh, nutritious meals they cannot provide for themselves on their limited incomes. The Elm Court Center also provides a safe gathering place for seniors, many of whom live alone.
The cost of a senior meal is just $3.95. We are very grateful to the Global Giving donors for their generous support of senior nutrition.
Thank you for your continued support of senior meals on weekends. Our Weekend Meal Program at the Elm Court Center in downtown Portland is one of our ongoing projects. Most of the seniors who access this program live below poverty. Most live alone. And the majority do not have access to cooking facilities. They dine at our Elm Court Center Monday through Friday and receive a hot, nutritious lunch. And, thanks to donations from organizations such as Global Giving, we are able to provide these seniors with a hot meal on the weekends as well. If we were not there with a meal, these seniors would have to survive from Friday noon to Monday noon with no food.
Between April 1 and June 30, 2013, we served 2,533 weekend meals at the Elm Court Center. That compares to just 1,738 meals served during the same time period in 2012. We have recently completed our annual client survey and learned that 25% of those we serve live below poverty. In addition to weekend meals, 35% of those surveyed said they would also like to receive an evening meal. We are looking into funding options to make this a possibility.
It takes just $3.95 to provide a hot meal for a senior. We are deeply appreciative of the generosity of GlobalGiving donors and your partnership in our vision that no senior will go hungry or experience social isolation.
The Weekend Meal Program at our Elm Court Center is an ongoing project for the Meals on Wheels People. It serves seniors who live in or near downtown Portland, Ore. Most live below poverty. Most live alone. And the majority do not have access to cooking facilities. The dine at our Elm Court Center Monday through Friday and receive a hot, nutritious lunch. And, thanks to donations from organizations such as Global Giving, we are able to provide these seniors with a hot meal on the weekends as well. If we were not there with a meal, these seniors would have to survive from Friday noon to Monday noon with no food.
Between Jan. 1 and March 31, 2013, we served 2,276 weekend meals at the Elm Court Center. That compares to 1,893 meals served during the same time period in 2012. It is clear that the need is growing. As more baby boomers age and realize the uncertainty of pension programs and diminishing social security benefits, they are turning to Meals on Wheels People to stretch their food dollar. We ask for a suggested donation of $3 for meals, but the average donation is 77 cents.
Thank you for supporting our work and sharing our vision that "no senior go hungry or experience social isolation."In the past six months, an average of 1,200 Portland-area seniors have received weekend meals. Typically, these seniors are "aging in place" and depend on Meals on Wheels People to provide them with a daily meal and friendly check-in. When a senior is unable to obtain, store or prepare food, we become a literal lifeline. The seniors receive a healthy meal, and the volunteer who delivers it is often the only person they'll see each weekend day."Thank you for the meals, they are tasty and they help me keep up my strength. The volunteers who bring the meals are so friendly, and they bring in my mail and feed my cat for me. I don't know what I would do without you all," said a genteman who lives in a one-room apartment near downtown Portland.For more information about Meals on Wheels People, please visit www.mealsonwheelspeople.org.
The Meals on Wheels People/Loaves & Fishes serve 5,000 hot, noontime meals to seniors in the greater Portland metro area. 15-20 percent of the seniors who receive weekday Meals-On-Wheels are eating only one meal a day – the meal we provide for them. These seniors would go hungry on the weekends if not for the Weekend Meals Program. The Weekend Meals Program reaches out to homebound, at-risk seniors to help improve their eating patterns as well as their physical and mental well-being.
The Weekend Meals Program:
The social benefit of this program is profound; knowing that someone who cares will be bringing a hot meal and checking in on them is a lifeline for these seniors. The financial benefit to the community is also important. Fifty percent of chronic health conditions in the elderly can be improved with proper nutrition. The cost of providing Weekend Meals to a senior for a whole year is roughly equal to the cost of just two days of nursing home care. Providing hot, daily meals allows seniors to remain independent and living in their own homes.
It takes just $3.68 to provide a meal for a senior. A gift of $30 would provide a senior with weekend meals for an entire month. The seniors who receive Weekend Meals deeply appreciate the generosity of GlobalGiving donors, and the Meals on Wheels People/Loaves & Fishes Centers thank you for helping us achieve our vision that no senior will go hungry or experience social isolation.
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