BUENA VISTA, Va. (WDBJ7) It starts with trays on a table, food bought from from Southern Virginia University. And it’s packaged into individual meals to be delivered – some 13,000 in a year – to homebound people in the Rockbridge area.
“It’s not only a hot meal every day," says Laurie Macrae, Regional Director of the Valley Program for Aging Services. "It is a safety check. For some of our recipients, our people are the only people they see during the week. That’s huge.”
What it is, is Meals on Wheels.
Today sheriff’s deputies and police are here as part of “champions week,” when community leaders and local officials ride along.
“Just seeing the people’s faces when we show up with their lunches, you know, really makes you feel good,” said Danny Humphries from the Buena Vista Sheriff’s Office as he got ready to head out. He rode along last year as well.
Volunteer Jeri Schaff explains: “It’s a wonderful thing that we’ve done. And I don’t know that these people could continue to live alone, on their own in the community, without it.”
Of course, all of this takes money, some of it federal. And though that funding line has been cut in the federal budget, the folks here say they’ll find a way.
“We want our recipients to know that we will be delivering meals to them, no matter what it takes,” Macrae says.
”To see them light up, and to see them worry when you don’t show up quite on time, or to have them say: Come in honey sit down, I have new pictures of my grandbabies," says Schaff. "It makes their day.”