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Support Needed for 200+ Seniors on Waitlist

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May 22, 2024

Dear Friends of Senior Resources,

Senior hunger and isolation are at an all-time high in our community and our funding is not keeping pace. Unfortunately, we have seen our waiting list for Meals on Wheels grow in 2024. Today, 203 older adults in Richland County are sitting in their homes waiting for meal services that we cannot provide. This is an increase of over 500% from this period last year (43).

The reality is that the needs in our community are great and the current funding is not keeping up. Despite the increased support from our donors and volunteers in the last year, keeping up pace with needs is challenging. One major factor is the costs of preparing and delivering meals continue to increase. Anyone who has visited a grocery store or dined at their favorite restaurant in the past 18 months has likely noticed a significant increase in food prices. We have also felt the impact, with our direct food costs rising by over 30%.

Despite an increase in private support, other funding sources have not kept pace. Recently, we were informed that state and federal funding for our meal services will remain flat as we approach the new budget in July. To make matters worse, the proposed budget from Richland County indicates a significant cut to our funding, reducing it to pre-2017 levels. This threatens our ability to meet essential senior needs, and we urgently need your support.

As we head into the summer months, Senior Resources leadership and the Board of Directors are actively working to minimize the direct impact of rising costs and inadequate funding. As part of this, we are asking for your help:

  • Make a monetary donation to increase available service levels.
  • Volunteer to prepare and deliver meals to help keep our costs down.
  • Advocate to federal, state, and local leaders to meet the growing needs in our community.
  • Collect food pantry items that we can use in emergency situations to keep those seniors on our waiting list from going hungry while they wait for their next meal.

With nearly 60 years of service, Senior Resources has repeatedly risen to meet every challenge thrown our way. Every day I see the love this community has for its booming senior population and I know that collectively we have what it takes to meet this challenge. Will you join us in taking action today to ensure all 203 seniors receive the meals they deserve? Your support will make a tangible difference in their lives and empower us to continue serving our older neighbors.

Sincerely,

Andrew Boozer
Executive Director

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