By Austin B. Hahn
In December of last year, I received a letter from Meals on Wheels America asking for a donation. The national organization delivers meals to senior citizens who are unable to grocery shop or cook for themselves. The statistics I learned were shocking!
- 1.9 million seniors must choose between buying food and buying needed medicine.
- 4.8 million older Americans worry about not having enough to eat.
- At least 80% of older Americans are living with at least one chronic condition, and 50% have at least two.
In addition, according to the letter I received, 50% of the seniors they serve are low income. All are chronically disabled, and almost all live alone.
Please donate to Meals on Wheels America. Hundreds of seniors without family or friends are struggling to live in their own homes. Many have developed debilitating conditions such as a broken hip, blindness, or severe arthritis. This program is so cost-effective that “home delivered meals for a year are less than the cost of a single day of intensive care in the hospital” (Peppones).
We are all going to be old someday. I couldn’t imagine being left alone and afraid to open packaged food because of arthritis or to walk down the stairs in my own home because of poor eyesight or osteoporosis.
Many of these seniors have expressed their gratitude. Here are some letters the organization has received:
I am a widow. [I have] no children and [have] lived here with my sister. She did the cooking, and she passed away 5 years ago. I am so happy to have a hot meal.
At times it is hard for me to go shopping, and at my income, (social security), buying goodies is not on the shopping list. Thank you for being so thoughtful and considerate to people who need to be remembered.
Donate today at: https://www.mowaa.org/donatejoy. Your kindness will contribute to the nourishment and well-being of our elderly. Thank you!
Peppones, Martha. Letter to author. n.d. T.S.