Before the pandemic, nearly 9.7 million seniors were threatened by hunger, 5.3 million of which were food insecure or very low food secure. Due to COVID-19, we know that an even greater number of older adults are experiencing food insecurity.
Meals on Wheels America
Coronavirus Impact and Needs:
Vulnerable seniors are at the greatest risk amid COVID-19. Local Meals on Wheels programs are on the front lines every day, focused on doing all they can to keep older Americans safe and nourished in communities across the country. Click here to learn more about their ongoing initatives and response to this crisis.
Meals on Wheels has been guided by a single goal since the first known U.S. delivery by a small group of Philadelphia citizens in 1954 – to support our senior neighbors to extend their independence and health as they age. What started as a compassionate idea has grown into one of the largest and most effective social movements in America, currently helping more than 2.4 million seniors annually in virtually every community in the country.
Meals on Wheels America is the oldest and largest national organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based senior nutrition programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior hunger and isolation. This network, along with more than two million volunteers, delivers the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that enable America’s seniors to live nourished lives with independence and dignity. By providing funding, leadership, research, education and advocacy support, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time.
Seniors represent a dramatically growing segment of the hunger crisis in America. There are nearly 9 million seniors facing the threat of hunger today and by 2050 this number will be nearly equal to the populations of our country's four largest cities combined. What is more, one in four seniors live alone, with one in five reporting feelings of loneliness.
Meals on Wheels is an effective solution to the three biggest threats to our seniors: inadequate nutrition, isolation and safety. Delivering much more than a meal, we provide the safety check, the warm smile and friendly conversation that enable millions of seniors to remain in their own homes, where they want to be.
Not only is Meals on Wheels the most effective and caring way to support seniors needing extra help, but it saves us all billions of dollars in Medicaid, health and long-term care expenses. In fact, for every $1 invested in Meals on Wheels, we save up to $50 in Medicaid spending.
Our goal is to support the whole person, ensuring that every senior in America has a chance to live a fully nourished life, with independence and dignity, for as long as they are able. Together, We Can Deliver.