Meals on Wheels Montgomery County will deliver Thanksgiving meals to clients a few days before Thanksgiving, but on Nov. 28, they will deliver “turkey treat” bags to over 500 clients.
“It is made up of a can of chicken, we are sending green beans, “craisins,” or cranberry sauce, instant potatoes and coffee with creamer,” Meals on Wheels Program Coordinator Rhonda Darby said. It’s meant to let them know we haven’t forgotten about them on Thanksgiving, because we do know a lot of them will be alone that day, but also it serves as a safety check, a volunteer will go out and check on them. Because the meals are non-perishable, they have a little more time to visit with them, then on our regular meal delivery days, because those meals are warm and have to be delivered in a timely manner.”
Darby said the turkey treat bags are made possible through lots of donations.
“Local schools, churches, actually our insurance agent, she got her group together and they made 100 bags for us. There is a high school softball team that made them for us, they made 50 bags that are coming on Monday. “Mainly local churches, schools, just groups that are involved with Meals on Wheels and want to make the seniors feel like they’re still a part of the community,” Darby said.
Meals on Wheels serves a total of 620 clients, and Darby said 100 of them are veterans. For turkey treat day, they will serve a little over 500, because there are some seniors who will be spending time with their families, but the majority of them will not.
Darby said for the Thanksgiving meal that will be delivered to clients before Nov. 28, their Chef, John Alton, is preparing a traditional meal.
“That will go out early next week and he (Chef John), specializes in senior meals, so they are low in fat, sodium and sugar.” A lot of them rely on the meals from us. Our goal is to keep them in the home as long as possible so they can be independent, and also to keep them out of the hospital because many of them, before they got on service, were going to the hospital for malnutrition. They weren’t able to eat a healthy meal.”
Darby recalls a story she heard when she was a volunteer for Meals on Wheels. She said a man from The Woodlands who was a double amputee, would get in his wheelchair every day, go to the convenience store, and he was living on soda and chips.
“His health declined. He was referred to us through a hospital that he frequented because of his health concerns. “Once he got on service, he wasn’t making those hospital visits any longer, which in a crazy way, saves taxpayer money as well, because they’re not putting a strain on the system, because they’re in their home and they’re able to live independently and where they want to be. They want to be at home,” Darby said.