Community Care Durham is once again taking part in the annual March for Meals (MOW) celebrations and recognizing the tireless efforts of its volunteers who help make the program possible.
During the 2023 March for Meals Community Champions Week, March 20 to 24, local politicians are helping deliver meals to CCD clients and to bring awareness to the program.
March for Meals is a month-long celebration of Meals on Wheels, an essential service supporting thousands of Durham residents. Last year alone CCD delivered 69,421 frozen meals and 61,803 hot meals to clients across Durham Region.
“Without a doubt our volunteers are vital to the Meals on Wheels program,” said James Meloche, Community Care Durham CEO. “They ensure our clients receive a nutritious meal, but they also provide valuable safety checks when delivering, especially to clients who may be isolated and alone.”
CCD wants to build its MOW volunteer numbers as they’ve dropped over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Many of our volunteers stuck with us through the pandemic and for that, we’re grateful,” Meloche said. “But our volunteer numbers have dropped with many now returning to work. Coupled with client volumes increasing we need help to deliver our hot and frozen meals as well as our Community Food Boxes. We need to rebuild our base.”
Meals on Wheels are crucial in reducing food insecurity, social anxiety, and isolation, specifically for seniors. Research shows that healthy eating provides essential energy and nutrients for general welfare and maintenance of health, functional autonomy, and risk reduction of chronic diseases in older ages.
Volunteering is rewarding and helps people in the community. It only takes a couple of hours a week. MOW volunteers help package and deliver meals to clients across Durham Region.
“March for Meals gives us an opportunity to thank all our Meals on Wheels volunteers and to enlist the help of many of our elected representatives to spread the word about Meals on Wheels. It’s one of the first programs we offered 45 years ago, and it continues to be one of the most sought-after services we provide,” Meloche said.
CCD looks forward to welcoming our elected officials during Community Champions Week and raising awareness of the importance of our Meals on Wheels program. For more information or to find out how you can volunteer, please visit www.communitycaredurham.on.ca.
Ian McMillan, Communications Specialist
Community Care Durham
Phone: 905-430-1863 (cell: 905-431-8700)