Mayors deliver Meals on Wheels

West Jefferson Mayor Ray Martin (right) delivers a meal to a LifeCare Alliance Meals on Wheels client.

(Posted April 2, 2024)

To mark the 52nd anniversary of the Older Americans Act Nutrition Program, LifeCare Alliance set aside the week of March 18-22 for its annual March For Meals campaign. West Jefferson Mayor Ray Martin and London Mayor Patrick J. Closser delivered meals to seniors in their communities during the campaign.

March For Meals is a nationally organized effort calling attention to the importance of Meals-On-Wheels home meal delivery and daily wellness checks for older adults.

In 1972, President Richard Nixon signed into law a measure amending the Older Americans Act of 1965 to include a national nutrition program for seniors. This legislation supported the rapid growth of the nationwide network of senior nutrition programs commonly referred to as Meals on Wheels. The Older Americans Act Nutrition Program is the only federally supported program designed to address both senior hunger and isolation.

London Mayor Pat Closser (left) delivers a meal to a LifeCare Alliance Meals on Wheels client.

LifeCare Alliance is the Meals-On-Wheels program for five central Ohio counties, including Madison County, serving more than 6,000 meals a day. During March For Meals, the agency brings this critical mission to the attention of local influencers and stakeholders to make sure this work continues to be supported at local, state, and federal levels.

Demand for home meal delivery in central Ohio has risen as high as 87 percent above pre-pandemic numbers, and LifeCare Alliance is still able to operate without a waiting list, thanks partially to the support of these leaders.

“After the pandemic, seniors are more isolated than ever,” said Charles Gehring, president and CEO of LifeCare Alliance. “Some days, our delivery drivers and volunteers are the only human contact our clients have. That’s why our services are essential to both the physical and mental health and well-being of seniors, and they prove that being there matters.”

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