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Taking Care of Those Who Took Care of Us
"Let’s face it. It’s hard getting old. As you age, you lose the resilience your body once had to fight disease and ward off infection. Proper nutrition becomes more critical than ever before. The problem is that oftentimes the healthiest, most nutrient dense foods are sometimes the most expensive and hardest to access, especially for those living on fixed incomes. A recent study from Feeding America shows that, “seniors struggling with hunger are more likely to have lower nutrient intakes and are at higher risk for chronic health conditions and depression than their non-hungry counterparts”. In fact, the study goes on to show that seniors struggling with hunger are 53% more likely to have a heart attack, 52% more likely to struggle with asthma, and 40% more likely to have congestive heart failure than their non-hungry counterparts. By 2029 a projected 71.4 million people will be age 65 and older, the equivalent of 20% of the population. Compare that to the fact that seniors made up only 14% of the population in 2012.
So what does that mean? It means that we all are going to have to work together, combining resources to ensure that those who took care of us are not forgotten. There are no rules or guidelines dictating how we must go about this. I believe, however, the rule of thumb should be to do for a senior what you wish would be done for you. If you were a senior, what would be important to you? Would it be a consistent supply of nutritious food? Adequate medical care? Or simply just an hour or so to spend in conversation with someone? Truthfully, I would hope to have access to all three during my elderly years. And while that is not the case for many of our seniors in today’s world, that doesn’t mean it has to remain that way.
You and me, we have a lot more power than we think. We all have the ability to donate food or advocate for more comprehensive elderly services and benefits. I also believe that if we looked really hard we might even find an hour or so during our busy lives to show an elderly person in our community the attention and compassion they most certainly deserve. Our parents, grandparents, elderly neighbors and other seniors have toiled long and hard to ensure we live in one of the richest most developed countries in the world. It seems only fitting that we provide them with the honor that is so evidently their due."
What You Can Do To Help
Volunteering for Meals on Wheels is a great way to make a huge impact in a short amount of time. By delivering meals you bring nutritious food and a friendly visit to ten to twenty seniors and people with disabilities in your community. In addition volunteers are also needed in the kitchen to prep and pack meals to be delivered to Meals on Wheels recipients.
Anyone can deliver meals, and it’s a great volunteer opportunity for families and teams of employees, as well. Sign up today and find out how easy and rewarding it is to bring nutrition and independence to your neighbors!
Sign-Up to Volunteer
We will review submissions as they are received. All Volunteer selections will be contingent on background checks. Please fill out the form below and press submit. Once we receive your request someone from our office will contact you within 24-48 hours.