Every day, about 250 area seniors get a nutritious meal courtesy of Chenango County; many are delivered to their doorsteps by volunteers participating in the Meal on Wheels program.
The Chenango County Public Safety Facility’s kitchen prepares the 250 meals daily for the Chenango County Area Agency on Aging, whose volunteers and staff deliver them to anyone 60 years or older in need.
On Monday, I traveled to the Grace Manor Apartment Welcome Center in the Village of Sherburne and met with the site’s staff, who deliver around 60 meals three days a week – Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
When the program began in 1974, 75 percent of the meals were consumed at senior or community centers, but today 75 percent are now delivered to residences, explained Deb Sanderson, director of the Area Agency on Aging.
“All seniors 60 or older are eligible for the program. Income is not a deciding factor; it is a need-based program,” she said.
Sanderson said many who receive meals suffer from varying degrees of physical disability and chronic illness.
“They face certain challenges in the routine activities of daily living,” she said.