Lydia is a food recipient from St. Vincent Meals on Wheels, one of the LA Regional Food Bank’s partner agencies. Most of the Food Bank’s partner agencies set up distributions at their facilities, allowing those in need to obtain food at the agency’s facility. Meals on Wheels, however, is different. The mission of St. Vincent Meals on Wheels is to prepare and deliver nutritious food to homebound residents who are unable to shop and cook for themselves throughout Los Angeles County.
Lydia is an older adult, and is blind. She describes how sometimes she runs out of food toward the end of the month. It is important for Lydia to eat regularly so that her blood-sugar levels remain within range. Her family visits her often and provides as much support as is possible, but Lydia needs some extra help with some of her meals. That’s where the Food Bank, and Meals on Wheels come in.
Meals on Wheels prepares ready-to-eat food that is delivered right to Lydia’s doorstep. Grocery-style food is also provided through Meals on Wheels, via the Food Bank. Food is delivered by the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank to St. Vincent Meals on Wheels, and volunteers prepare bags of food to be distributed later.
“They help me a lot because I don’t have to worry about what I’m going to eat for lunch,” says Lydia. “All of this is a great big help for those who are in need.”
The need for food assistance in Los Angeles County is great, and people are coming together to make a difference. St. Vincent Meals on Wheels is just one example of an orginization that goes above just providing food. Lydia, like many others who recieve food from St. Vincent Meals on Wheels, treasures the company and conversation that the regular visits bring.
“The most important part of what we do is that daily contact between the client and the person delivering the meal,” said Veronica Dover, Executive Director of St. Vincent Meals on Wheels. “That’s really where the program happens.” Lydia, for example, has photos of her family all around her home, and also has items that remind her of her past, and help to tell her story.