Sooke’s Meals on Wheels organization is the last surviving MOW on Vancouver Island. It’s because of the people in town who volunteer year after year to ensure seniors and shut-ins have something to eat. It’s about a sense of community and community service and it’s been ongoing for the past 40 years.
Meals on Wheels is a non-profit organization providing home-cooked meals to those who are unable to provide themselves with nutritious meals. The volunteers are in the kitchen at the Sooke Community Hall three times a week cooking the meals and others deliver 24 fresh meals and some frozen ones to their clients. The meals cost $5 and invoices are delivered to clients at the beginning of each month for the previous month’s meals. Menus are sent out and there is an opt-out if one doesn’t care for a meal. Clients can also order frozen meals.
For those who are elderly or shut-in, the meal deliveries are a contact with other people. It also allows older people to remain in their own homes longer and it gives families peace of mind to know their parent has someone checking up on them.
“We check on the handicapped,” said May Anderson, a 20-year volunteer. “We check on people three times a week. People love the visits. Some drivers take their children and the older people like to visit with the kids.”
Meals on Wheels is seeking more volunteers for the kitchen as well as delivery drivers. They fear the organization may fold if they don’t get the help they need to keep the program going.
Kitchen helpers work approximately 3 1/2 hours per day, twice a month from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.. They need cooks who like to prepare soups, entrees and desserts. Drivers and driver helpers work about 1 1/2 hours, twice a month. They operate on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. They have seven teams of cooks and drivers.
Anderson said it is always a great time, an opportunity to meet new people who have a lot of fun and it’s a community service.
“It’s a very important service to the community,” she said.
To volunteer, call May at 250-642-4973 or Alma at 250-642-2184.