EATON — Mayor Joe Renner presented a proclamation to the Preble County Council on Aging on Tuesday, Feb. 23, declaring March as the 19th Annual “March for Meals” Month.
According to the PCCOA, Meals on Wheels has been guided by a single goal since the first known U.S. delivery by a small group of Philadelphia citizens in 1954 – to support senior neighbors to extend their independence and health as they age. For the last 19 years, the Meals on Wheels network has claimed the month of March as its time to join forces to strengthen the impact of its efforts and rally communities around the country.
The PCCOA currently serves 200 seniors in Preble County, but there are still seniors on an active waiting list who need sponsors to provide them with meals.
According to PCCOA Marketing Manager Wende Kluener, a donation of $12.50 per week will assure that a seniors in need will be provided with a hot, nutritious meal each day.
Trained drivers for the PCCOA not only deliver meals, but provides wellness checks, social interaction and assistance with small tasks such as picking up the mail. The PCCOA currently has seven home delivery routes and drives approximately 360 miles each day, projected to be 84,960 total miles in 2021.
In 2018, the PCCOA prepared and delivered 30,695 meals, and in 2019, that number increased to 32,531.
In 2020, as seniors were kept to their homes due to COVID-10, 85,186 meals were prepared and delivered, and average of 7,744 per month.
“As a former volunteer driver for Meals on Wheels for the PCCOA, I can say that seeing the seniors each day gave me great joy. I enjoyed interacting with them and at times helped by taking out their trash or catching their dog that got loose,” Kluener said. “Meals on Wheels provides so much more than food. Now, more than ever, our seniors are isolated and many live alone. Meals on Wheels may be the only interaction they have during the day.”
Those looking to help can call 937-456-4947 to make a donation and Sponsor a Senior.
“Together, we can deliver and help eliminate senior hunger in Preble County,” Kluener said.
Visit the PCCOA’s Facebook page at https://rb.gy/sidcl2 for more information about how to support the local Sponsor a Senior program.
The proclamation can be read in full below:
“Whereas, on March 22, 1972, President Richard Nixon signed into law a measure that amended the Older Americans Act of 1965 and established a national nutrition program for Seniors 60 years and older; and,
Whereas, the Meals on Wheels Association of America established the “National March for Meals” Campaign in March 2002 to recognize the historic month, the importance of the Older Americans Act Senior Nutrition Programs and raise awareness about senior hunger in America; and,
Whereas, the 2021 observance of the “March for Meals” campaign provides an opportunity to support the Preble County Council on Aging’s Meals on Wheels programs that deliver vital and critical services by donating, volunteering and raising awareness about senior hunger and isolation; and,
Whereas, PCCOA’s Meals on Wheels are to be highly commended for their service to our communities and Seniors for 13 years; and,
Whereas, volunteers for Meals on Wheels in the Eaton area are the backbone of the program and they not only deliver nutritious meals to homebound Seniors and individuals with disabilities, but also show caring concern and attention to their welfare; and,
Whereas, it is my honor to recognize the Preble County Council on Aging and all the dedicated volunteers for their outstanding contributions and essential services provided especially during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as for the work they will continue to so generously bring to Eaton and the Preble County communities.
Now, therefore, I, Joe Renner, Mayor of the City of Eaton, Ohio, and on behalf of Eaton City Council, do hereby proudly proclaim the month of March 2021 as the ‘19th Annual March for Meals’ Month in the City of Eaton and urge every citizen to take time this month to honor the Preble County Council on Aging, the Seniors they serve and the volunteers who care for them. Our recognition and involvement of the “National 2021 March for Meals” Campaign can enrich our entire community and improve the quality of life for our Seniors.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the City of Eaton, Ohio, to be affixed this 23rd day of February, 2021.”
Reach Braden Moles at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @BradenMoles