Cathy Mackay, director of the Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging, announced that its Senior Wellness and Nutrition (SWAN) program was recently awarded a $2,500 grant from Subaru of America as part of Subaru's "Share the Love" event.
The Meals on Wheels Association of America (MOWAA) is one of five charities selected by Subaru to receive proceeds from the "Share the Love" event. Subaru donates $250 per vehicle to MOWAA when chosen by customers who purchase or lease a Subaru. MOWAA then awards grants to qualifying local Meals on Wheels programs to support local efforts to end senior hunger.
The "Share the Love" grant received by Cattaraugus County will be used to supplement the SWAN program's emergency meal supply given to Meals on Wheels recipients to prepare for the next (2014-2015) winter season. Emergency meal bags are given to Meals on Wheels recipients to have on hand in the event that weather prevents volunteers from delivering their regular meals.
The SWAN program relies on food donations from the community to build the emergency meal bags, and the bags are usually supplied with enough shelf-stable goods to provide meals for one or two days.
During this past harsh winter season, volunteers were unable to deliver Meals on Wheels in some areas for as many as four days, and the emergency meal bags did not contain enough food for such an extended period of time. This grant will be used to purchase additional food to supplement community donations to create more substantial emergency meal bags for the next winter season.
The purpose of the Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging's Senior Wellness and Nutrition program is to maintain the independence, delay or prevent nursing home placement, and improve or maintain the current health status of homebound Meals on Wheels participants.
For questions about Meals on Wheels or to volunteer, call the Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging at 373-8032 or 800-462-2901.