We have consistently shown up for Maryland’s homebound population. Our longevity and proven success prepared us to face the COVID-19 pandemic head-on and gave clients and the community confidence that we would be here when they needed us most.
Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland’s historic COVID-19 response is overwhelmingly apparent when looking at the numbers. The quantity of meals delivered increased from 1,354,975 (FY 2019) to 1,977,732 (FY 2020) – a 45% increase in one year, with most of the growth occurring from mid-March through June. The impact, however, is best described by our clients’ incredible stories.
Mary H., Silver Spring: After 46 years of teaching youth of all ages, Mary, now 65 years old, is happily retired. Unfortunately, a few years ago, Mary sufferedfrom health complications that made standing to cook difficult and painful. She turned to Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland for help in early 2019 and has been thrilled with the services ever since. Mary looks forward to receiving her weekly meal boxes and loves the extra items such as milk and butter that are sent along with the meals, as well as the bread variety. She is so impressed with the quality of the meals and recommends the service to others who need it. Mary appreciates that the volunteers always keep a social distance and wear masks, showing their commitment to safety. She says that “Every single volunteer is so sweet. No volunteer ever shows up with a frown.”
Beverly R., Baltimore City: Beverly R. has a long history with MOWCM. Sixty years ago, when MOWCM first began, Beverly was a volunteer out of the Douglas Memorial Community Church in Baltimore City. Beverly takes great pride in being a part of one of the first churches in Maryland to participate in a Meals on Wheels program. She describes it as “such a wonderful thing to be a volunteer for such a good program.” Now a meal recipient, Beverly knows that the food she receives from MOWCM is nutritious and varied. She loves the inclusion of milk and juice along with the easy-to-heat meals. Though COVID-19 is difficult, she is grateful to the amazing volunteers and always looks forward to the meal deliveries. She is happy to be home where she can sit comfortably on her front steps and see the friendly faces of neighbors as they pass by.
Julia M., Columbia: Julia is a retired nurse and indoor gardener, who will soon be celebrating her 80th birthday. She lives independently in her apartment with her 16-year-old chihuahua, Rocky. She has been receiving home-delivered meals for five years and loves the service, knowing she is eating nutritious food. While the COVID-19 pandemic has kept Julia confined to her building, she has found comfort and joy in being a part of the Client Wellness Calls program. Every week, Julia looks forward to hearing from her phone pal, 20-year old college student Erin. They have found they have so much in common and love sharing highlights from their week. Julia has enjoyed hearing about the effects of COVID-19 from a young person’s perspective and she values finding connection across generations.
Do you have or do you know someone with a Meals on Wheels story to share? We’d love to hear from you! Email Julia Tich at firstname.lastname@example.org.