Charity Corner: Meals on Wheels | San Diego County


In my previous life, I was an event planner. I planned all sorts of events from corporate events to baby showers. However, my bread and butter was working with local nonprofits here in San Diego on their fundraisers. My former partner and I owned our own planning and production company where 90% of our business was planning events that would help raise funds for organizations in the county. It was during this time that I really found my love for nonprofits and wanted to do as much as I could to make sure they got the necessary funds to keep their respective organizations thriving. I will be writing about many of these charities in the coming posts - so stay tuned!

When my business partner and I parted ways and I sold my part of the company, I knew at some point I wanted to be involved with a nonprofit, on the inside, where there was no outside compensation being made on my part. My opportunity arose when the C.E.O. of Meals on Wheels San Diego County posted a position that was opening in her organization for...and event manager. It was a perfect opportunity for me to utilize my skills and still give back to a very worthy organization!

Meals on Wheels as a whole originated in the United Kingdom during the Blitz, when many people lost their homes and therefore the ability to cook their own food. The Women's Volunteer Service for Civil Defence (WVS, later WRVS) provided food for these people. The name "Meals on Wheels" derived from the WVS's related activity of bringing meals to servicemen. The concept of delivering meals to those unable to prepare their own evolved into the modern programmes that deliver mostly to the housebound elderly, sometimes free, or at a small charge. *source: Wikipedia. Since the 1970's Meals on Wheels has been delivering to local San Diegans who are elderly and food insufficient. For a minimal (or subsidized) cost, San Diego seniors receive daily meals (breakfast and lunch) from a friendly volunteer. These incredible volunteers not only deliver meals, but provide a daily wellness check, many times helping these seniors in a time of need.
We came across a lot of hurdles at Meals on Wheels...we found that our cause was not "sexy" and so a lot of people didn't want to donate. The nonprofit industry as a whole seems to donate primarily to causes dealing with children, cancer, and animals - which of course, all are beyond worthy. So we needed to find ways to help the organization gain notoriety and show people that so many San Diego seniors are food insufficient, lonely, and need a personal touch from a kindly volunteer. Over 3000 San Diegans are receiving Meals on Wheels benefits, and many wait on a wait list. 1500 of those seniors are veterans (HALF!) or spouses or veterans. Through incredible acts of kindness through corporate donations, individual contributions, and of course EVENTS, Meals on Wheels are able to help these seniors on a daily basis get the necessary healthy nutrition and interaction from another human.

While nearly every nonprofit is worthy and needs the help of donations from individuals and corporate entities, I emplore you check out Meals on Wheels (in San Diego and beyond) and go volunteer for a day. You will be the highlight of a senior's day.

For more information or to donate to Meals on Wheels San Diego County visit: Meals on Wheels San Diego County.

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