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The Kitchen Cooks Up Alternative Source of Funding

<br><br><p dir="LTR">In three months, the federal government's new fiscal year will begin and with it mandatory cuts called the sequester.</p> <p dir="LTR">And those cuts could impact hundreds of Wichita Falls seniors in the local Meals on Wheels program." </p> <p dir="LTR">Mechell Dixon joins us now with more on this story.</p> <p dir="LTR">Any idea how much could be cut from the program.</p>

According to local Meals on Wheels officials, about 10% of the program's budget totals more than $100,000.

But officials at The Kitchen have cooked up a plan to start an alternative source of funding.

Five days a weeks, volunteers load up more than 700 meals and deliver them to seniors and disabled residents The Kitchen's Meals on Wheels program helps.

But this program could soon be losing a major portion of its funding.

"We stand to lose just about 10% of our overall Meals on Wheels budget from the recent developments of sequestration," says Dominique Calhoun with The Kitchen.

It amounts to $120,000, which officials say funds about 32 days of meal deliveries.

So, folks at The Kitchen plan to have 20 team leaders use their cell phones and their fingers to try to generate that money during a phone-a-thon.

Shasta Blair, The Kitchen's volunteer coordinator, is one of those team leaders and she's already started dialing up donations.

"I have been preparing my team members by having them contact loved ones, friends, neighbors ... anyone they think would be willing to donate the $5 to our cause," Blair says.

The goal of the phone-a-thon to raise at least $5,000 for the Meals on Wheels program but coordinators say it's also designed to raise awareness and they hope, additional donations in coming months.

"We want to make sure people understand, especially our family in Wichita Falls, the impact this sequestration is gonna have not just on this one organization but on the lives of so many people in this city," Calhoun explains.

The phone-a-thon kicks off Tuesday at 6 p.m. at The Kitchen.

Team members and volunteers will be there calling family, family and acquaintances for a donation of $5 or more.

While it's still unknown if cuts from sequestration will take place, officials at The Kitchen are not waiting around to see.

That's why they're hosting this first time phone-a-thon, which already has pledges totaling more than $1,000.

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