For many aging Americans, food insecurity – especially in these days of high inflation and the end of COVID-era support – is a very real issue. To combat this need, the Coastal Community Action Program (CCAP) facilitates a Senior Nutrition Program that helps provide healthy meals to residents in our area. These are designed to fill in gaps both nutritionally and socially, thanks to community and volunteer donations.

CCAP workers help with both home-delivered Meals on Wheels items as well as hosting in-person programs in local senior centers. This food is a lifeline that relies on everyone within the community working together in partnership and cooperation.

Meals on Wheels van parked outside a building
Coastal Community Action Program recently purchased two new decoratively-wrapped Meals on Wheels vans. Photo courtesy: Coastal Community Action Program

CCAP and Meals on Wheels Feed Local Seniors One Plate at a Time

The national Meals on Wheels organization reports that in 2023, half of American seniors lack enough income to meet basic needs. They also explain that due to decreased appetite, mobility issues and interaction with prescription medication, many seniors are at high risk of malnutrition.

More than 250 million meals are distributed each year thanks to their network of more than 5,000 community-based programs like CCAP. Jeannie Holt, CCAP’s senior nutrition program coordinator, says their volunteers typically deliver a hot meal twice a week and frozen meals to cover the other days. Meals and meal delivery are not income based and are provided on a suggested donation basis of $4 each.

More Than Just a Hot Supper, CCAP Brings Nutrition, Company and Care

So much more than just a food delivery service, the CCAP Meals on Wheels team is a social resource for local seniors. “Sometimes we are the only contact a person may have that day or even that week,” says Holt. “We encourage our volunteer drivers to communicate with us about anything that does not look normal or is suspicious so we can make the proper contact and arrangements to get people the help they may need.”

two people, one holding a brown paper bag, stand in front of a Meal on Wheels van.
Meals on Wheels helps area seniors with food delivery and shelf-stable ingredients to stay healthy and self-sufficient. Photo courtesy: Coastal Community Action Program

Annette Glodowski, senior nutrition program coordinator, is also passionate about the work they do. She explains that they serve approximately 4,800 meals to more than 150 people each month. “This is an amazing service that not only helps seniors stay in their homes longer, but it also provides nutrition to seniors recovering from illnesses to help them bounce back faster and get on with their regular lives,” says Glodowski.

The organization recently received a hunger relief grant from the Olympic Area Agency on Aging. This was used to purchase and decoratively wrap two new delivery vans to replace an aging fleet. The rest of the funds bought shelf-stable food for clients to keep on hand in the event of weather-related delays in service.

Volunteer with Meals on Wheels and Make a Senior’s Day

CCAP is always looking for volunteers to help with their Meals on Wheels program. They need drivers and runners—who take the food to the door—as well as folks to package items behind the scenes. To volunteer for a specific program, contact Glodowski at 360.500.4540, Holt at 360.532.5868 or your nearest senior center. There are locations in Aberdeen, Elma, Hoquiam, Ilwaco and Raymond.

People preparing food in a kitchen
Meals on Wheels volunteers are always needed to prep, package, drive and deliver meals throughout the community. Photo courtesy: Coastal Community Action Program

Looking for a 2023 Tax Donation and a way to help out Seniors in our area, mail a check or drop it at your nearest senior center made out to CCAP with MOW in the memo line or mail it to CCAP (Attn: MOW), at 101 East Market Street, Aberdeen WA, 98520. This program heavily relies on the generosity of volunteers and private donations.

Want to enjoy a warm meal or enroll yourself and loved ones for Meals on Wheels? Seniors 60+ or a younger person accompanied by a senior can visit a center five days a week. To see if you qualify for Meals on Wheels or learn more, call 360.533.5100 today.

You can find a list of local food banks in Grays Harbor and Pacific counties at CCAP’s website coastalcap.org.  Coastal Community Action Program’s strategic plan focuses on four key aspects: sustainability, community impact, culture and empowerment as a way to alleviate poverty, provide assistance and enhance quality of life. This is done in partnership with civic, community and support organizations as well as the tireless work of dedicated staff and volunteers.

They also provide housing and energy, home care, health and nutrition, employment support and volunteer, transportation, community services and developed the Coastal Energy Project which focuses on renewable, sustainable energy infrastructure within the community. Find help, or a place to volunteer, with CCAP and build a stronger future for everyone.

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