October is Community Support Month in the Province of Ontario, and Meals on Wheels Week is celebrated from October 1st to 7th.
This is an opportunity to celebrate the home and community care services which help over a million Ontarians live independently in their own homes each year. There are over 25 different community support services provided in Ontario, including Personal Care and Housekeeping, Meals on Wheels, Alzheimer and Adult Day Programs, Transportation to medical appointments, Friendly Visiting, and much more.
It’s a successful model because clients prefer to live in their own homes and communities, and supporting them to do so reduces costs to other parts of the health care system. The not-for-profit agencies that provide these services receive partial government funding, and are also supported by community foundations, individual donations and hours and hours of volunteer service each year.
In the Teeswater area Meals on Wheels are supplied by Boomer’s Cosy Restaurant, and Home and Community Support Services of Grey-Bruce coordinates Meals in Wheels.
Meals are delivered in Teeswater 5 days a week, Monday to Friday, and are delivered at noon. Many volunteers from the community deliver approximately 35 meals per month. Some people use Meals on Wheels for a short time as they recover from surgery or illness. Others start receiving Meals and realize that they are eating a more balanced diet, and then continue to receive Meals for a longer time. The cost of the meals is $7.00, and includes a soup, hot entree and dessert.
Meals on Wheels is more than just a meal. There are many benefits:
- Access to well-balanced, affordable meals
- Research shows that healthy eating provides essential energy and nutrients, and reduces the risk of chronic diseases at older ages.
- The benefits of Meals on Wheels are emotional and psychological, as well as physical. Sometimes, a friendly Meals on Wheels volunteer may be the only person a client interacts with in a given day.
- Meals on Wheels volunteers perform a valuable security check for isolated clients, and can notify the proper authorities in the case of accident or injury.
Home and Community Support Services of Grey Bruce delivers a variety of support programs, and recently celebrated its 25th Anniversary. In addition to Hot Meals on Wheels, Frozen Meals on Wheels are also available throughout Grey Bruce. Dining Club programs are also offered in Hanover and Markdale, and Housekeeping Services, Movin/GB Transportation Services, Adult Day Program and Friendly Visiting are also available.
For more information about volunteering at Home and Community Support Services, or to receive Meals on Wheels, contact 519-372-2091 or 1-800-267-3798 and push 3, or go to www.homecommunitysupport.com