Anonymous donor gives $50,000 to Meals on Wheels in Colorado

A generous gift for a vital service

Meals on Wheels, a program that delivers nutritious meals to seniors and people with disabilities, received a $50,000 donation from an anonymous donor through the Western Colorado Community Foundation (WCCF) . The donation will help the program cope with the budget shortfalls caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the rising food costs.

Meals on Wheels serves about 1,200 clients in Mesa County, providing them with hot meals, wellness checks, and social interaction. The program relies on volunteers, donations, and grants to operate. However, the pandemic has reduced the number of volunteers and increased the demand for the service.

The $50,000 donation will cover about 10% of the program’s annual budget, according to Amanda Debock, the program director of Meals on Wheels. She said the donation was a “huge blessing” and a “wonderful surprise” for the organization.

A nationwide challenge for Meals on Wheels

The donation to Meals on Wheels in Colorado is not an isolated case. Across the country, Meals on Wheels programs have been facing similar challenges and receiving similar support from generous donors.

Anonymous donor gives $50,000

In Ohio, Meals on Wheels of Southwest Ohio & Northern Kentucky received a $50,000 donation from Molina Healthcare & iHeartIMpact in March 2023 . The donation helped the program serve more than 10,000 senior citizens every year, especially after the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits were rolled back to pre-pandemic levels.

In North Carolina, Food Lion Feeds donated $500,000 to Meals on Wheels America in October 2023 . The donation supported more than 6,400 clients, with more than 1,200 new clients, and also provided additional funding for daily meal service throughout the year.

In Texas, Meals on Wheels of Odessa received a $50,000 matching donation from John Herriage, Realtor/owner of Copper Key Realty, in November 2023 . The donation kicked off the program’s end-of-year giving campaign and helped impact senior hunger.

A grateful community for Meals on Wheels

The clients of Meals on Wheels are not the only ones who benefit from the program. The volunteers, staff, and community members also appreciate the value of the service.

Maryann Jones, 89, is one of the clients who received a special visit from Meals on Wheels of Southwest Ohio & Northern Kentucky CEO Jennifer Steele and others from Molina Health in March 2023 . She said she liked all the meals and the juice that the program provided. “It sure enough was a surprise,” she said. “I’ve never had that many people in my house before.”

Steele said the program provides more than just food. It also provides wellness checks, pet support, and other things to keep seniors healthy and independent at home. “We’re starting to see waiting lists form now,” she said. “It’s really a difficult time seeing senior citizens living on a fixed income with food prices so high.”

The anonymous donor who gave $50,000 to Meals on Wheels in Colorado said he wanted to make a difference in the lives of seniors and people with disabilities. He said he was inspired by the work of the program and the WCCF. “I hope this donation encourages others to give to this vital service in our community,” he said.

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