More wheels required - Meals on Wheels
Find out how Meals on Wheels are helping people in need and how you can get involved.
This article appears in City Limits magazine - Issue 47 - December 2014.
Volunteers at Warradale Meals on Wheels have delivered almost a million meals since the branch was opened in 1991 - but more help is needed.
One of two branches within the City of Marion (the other is Hallett Cove), the Warradale group is in need of volunteer drivers to deliver the hundreds of meals is produces every week.
Warradale Meals on Wheels delivered more than 39,000 meals last year alone, producing an average of 155 meals every day. About 150 volunteers give their time to ensure that people in the community get a good, nourishing meal on a daily basis. That's soup, a hot main meal comprising proteins, starches and vegetables and a dessert.
Hallett Cove branch delivered 11,500 meals last year and has delivered more than 200,000 since it formed in 1992. Along with Warradale, it’s one of many branches in South Australia that work tirelessly delivering much needed dinners for Meals on Wheels, which turned 60 this year.
Meals on Wheels SA strategy and communications manager Peter Neal said volunteers can offer their services for as little or as much time as they can spare.
"It's a simple process - all that's needed is a registered, roadworthy and insured vehicle with a licensed driver, a police check conducted by Meals on Wheels and a couple of hours to spare,” he said.
“Deliverers work in teams of two, which makes the work easier and more enjoyable. They can drop the meal off and go or they can stop for a chat. A reimbursement is offered for out-of-pocket vehicle expenses, for those who wish to claim it. Some people take it because to cover costs, others decline it and it goes back into support for the branch.
"Whether you've got a few hours to spare once a week or once a fortnight, or can help out every day, we welcome it. The more the merrier.”
Ascot Park resident Alan Whyte started volunteering for Warradale Meals on Wheels in September this year.
“I’d recommend volunteering to anyone as it’s worth it simply to see the smiles on peoples’ faces,” Mr Whyte said.
Mr Neal said that the service is available for people any time it is needed.
"The only requirement to receive meals is that people cannot shop for or prepare a meal for themselves at any given time. It could be due to age, hospitalisation, a crisis” he said.
"If there's anyone who has trouble cooking or shopping with ease, they can give Meals on Wheels a call. A family member can refer them but people can also self-refer.
“You don't need a doctor's referral, there is no waiting list and no minimum meal numbers. And it's a myth that only elderly people use our service."
Anyone interested in helping out at the Warradale branch can call the Meals on Wheels Volunteering Department on 1800 854 453.
- Find out more about Meals on Wheels on the Meals on Wheels website.
City Limits Magazine
The City Limits Magazine is a community publication that keeps Marion residents in touch with what is happening in their community. It includes information about major projects, council initiatives and events, as well as profiles of community members.
It is published three times a year and distributed to 40,000 residents and businesses in the Marion Council area.