NOCONA (KFDX/KJTL) —For most people, summertime means vacations, visiting friends and family, and relaxing. But that leaves the Meals on Wheels organization short the many volunteers they get during the school year. With over 80 people on the Nocona Meals on Wheels route, the Senior Center is looking for at least 5 steady drivers to join their volunteer group, a group they say needs some diversity.
“A lot of them are seniors and elderly themselves and a lot of them have been in the hospital and have had healthcare needs,” Nocona Senior Center Executive Director Donna Culpepper said. “They’ve had knee surgery, they’ve had hip surgery, so therefore they cannot physically do their routes. So we’ve had a need to basically get younger people to try to help us deliver the meals.”
Though the Senior Center is short on volunteers, every meal gets delivered to every person on the route each day, even if that means officials with the center go out to deliver them themselves. And not just the people on the route benefit from Meals on Wheels, the Senior Center accepts dog and cat food donations to feed those that for some, get them out of bed each day.
“One day when I was delivering meals I saw one of our containers in a, like a kennel, and I asked Susie, I said “Susie, did you not like what we had yesterday?” She said, “no Donna, I didn’t have money to buy dog food so I gave her the meat and I ate the vegetables,”” Culpepper said.
Volunteers with the Nocona Meals on Wheels say the job is satisfying as it can mean everything to some people on their route. One volunteer said donating some of your time to others helps to have a well-rounded life, but that it’s easy to get attached to the people on your route.
“It just makes you feel good about accomplishing something for that day, something great that’s needed. And it’s an hour of your time, that’s really nothing,” Meals on Wheels Volunteer Sue Williams said.
Only 27 of the over 80 on the Nocona Meals on Wheels route are sponsored by the government, the rest are sponsored by community members who volunteer to feed and deliver the meals to those that would otherwise go without. And without as many volunteers as they’re used to, the Senior Center is hoping some new volunteers come cruising in.
For more information and how you can become a Meals on Wheels volunteer, call the Nocona Senior Center at 940-825-3148