Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels has just won $100 from the Meals On Wheels Association of America (MOWAA)/Subaru "Share the Love" grant program. The winning essay describes how the local community remembers homebound seniors by celebrating their birthdays in a unique way. Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels is now entering the next phase of the holiday competition which relies on getting the most Facebook users to "Like" the story. Winning that portion of the contest could earn this Meals On Wheels program up to an additional $500.
The money comes at a critical time for this Meals On Wheels program, and the more than 140 other grant winners nationwide. The country's economic downturn has made it more difficult to raise money to continue feeding the community's homebound and other hungry seniors. Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels plans to use the money to assist seniors in their determination to remain independently at home.
The MOWAA/Subaru "Share the Love" grant is tied to Subaru's Share the Love Event. The Share the Love Event will run from Nov. 20 through Jan. 3, 2011. Subaru will donate $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased to the customer's choice of one of five charities, including MOWAA.
"These Meals On Wheels programs share love every day by bringing food and companionship to America's hungry seniors," said MOWAA President and CEO Enid Borden. "For the third year in a row Subaru has generously included Meals on Wheels in its Share the Love Event. We want the world to read these stories and find out more about what these amazing Meals On Wheels programs do every day to 'Share the Love' in their communities."
"For 40 years, Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels has brightened the lives of area seniors who are unable to cook, by providing nutritious meals, friendship and remembering a birthday that may otherwise have been forgotten," said Joan Houck, executive director. "Clients and their families have expressed appreciation for the ongoing daily assistance the program provides"
The next phase of this competition relies on getting the most Facebook users to "Like" this story. More than 140 "Share the Love" essays from programs across the country have been posted on MOWAA's Member blog. The Meals on Wheels program with the most "Likes" will win an additional $500. Those placing second through 10th will receive an additional $250. To "Like" the local essay submitted for this Facebook contest, go to mowaablog.org and search "Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels."
Meals on Wheels was established in the Dunkirk-Fredonia are in 1970. It is a private, not for profit agency that provides home delivered meals to the elderly, ill, disabled and homebound, allowing them to remain as independent as possible. Nutritionally-balanced meals are delivered to residents as well as to senior dining sites in the areas of Dunkirk, Fredonia, Silver Creek, Irving, Forestville, Brocton and Portland. Services are provided to all who qualify, regardless of age, race, sex, religious or ethnic background.
The Winning Essay
The holiday season is a time when most of us share the love with our family and friends. Meals On Wheels shares the love with our local seniors who would otherwise be all alone and hungry during the holidays. It's only fitting that we are partnering with our friends at Subaru for the third year in a row for their "Share the Love" Event to raise funds to support Meals On Wheels. This is just one story of how we share the love here in our community.
Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels celebrates client birthdays with a small gift and visit by a volunteer. Many people receiving meals live alone and have no family nearby to help celebrate. The full time specialty bakers and wedding services shop "Cakes by Joyce and Peggy" joined forces with Meals on Wheels in 2005.
The mother-daughter team, bring a little more sunshine into a client's life by providing a small cake when their birthday arrives. Cakes are baked for diabetics as well as those who can tolerate sweets. One Valentine's Day, Joyce and Peggy provided more than 130 cookies to Meals on Wheels clients.
About three years ago Joyce, the founder of the business passed away. Her daughter Peggy took over the business and continues to supply Meals on Wheels with weekly birthday cakes.
Nestle Purina also participates in our celebration by providing "Pets for People" (stuffed animals) along with a handmade card provided by a local stamping club which accompanies the cake. One happy client sent the following thank you "Many thanks to all of you for my pretty birthday card and the delicious birthday cake and oh yes, the stuffed toy dog. I really appreciate it; you made my 82nd birthday a little more enjoyable."