The Impact of a Home-Delivered Meal Program on Nutritional Risk, Dietary Intake, Food Security, Loneliness and Social Well-Being
This study, conducted by faculty and graduate students from the University of South Florida’s College of Public Health, implemented a first of its kind approach to investigating the impact of meal service delivery and volunteer visits on homebound seniors receiving Meals on Wheels.
The study’s findings validate what we’ve all known for decades anecdotally through firsthand experience: that Meals on Wheels does in fact deliver so much more than just a meal.
Full text is available in the Journal of Nutrition in Gerontology and Geriatrics.
Faculty and students from The University of South Florida and staff from Meals On Wheels of Tampa collaborated to develop and evaluate the impact of the first produce delivery program (Produce on Wheels – POW!) for homebound seniors in the country.
The study findings confirm that the program is effective in increasing the fruit and vegetable intake of participants. Participants averaged an increase of almost 1 serving of fruit and ½ serving of vegetables each day. Given the “5-a-day” recommendation of fruit and vegetable intake, participants increased their intake by 30% toward the recommendation.
Full text is available in the Florida Public Health Review Journal 2017.
THE GREAT COST OF LIVING LONGER
While we all celebrate the increase in lifespan, maintaining health while aging comes with a price. We can provide a senior Meals on Wheels for an entire year for roughly the same cost as spending one day in the hospital or ten days in a nursing home.
Meals on Wheels saves us all billions of dollars in unnecessary Medicaid and Medicare expenses every year – tax dollars that can be spent in much better ways.
TAKING CARE OF THOSE WHO ONCE TOOK CARE OF US
For millions of Americans, Meals on Wheels is literally the difference between remaining in their own homes and needing to relocate to a nursing facility. The nutritious meal, friendly visit and safety check help them cope with three of the biggest threats of aging: hunger, isolation and loss of independence.
Research proves that when seniors have the right support, they gain greater quality of life, need fewer hospital stays and live longer.
MEALS ON WHEELS CLIENTS REPORT IMPROVED
HEALTH, SECURITY & INDEPENDENCE
IMPACT THAT GOES WELL BEYOND THE SENIORS WE SERVE
FOR FAMILIES: PROVIDING PEACE OF MIND FOR LOVED ONES NEAR AND FAR
FOR COMMUNITIES: WE CAN ALL BE PROUD OF SUPPORTING OUR SENIORS
I would like to thank everyone volunteering at Meals On Wheels. You have changed my life and taken me from malnourished to healthy. Your meals are wonderful and have improved my life in many ways. Thank you all for everything that you’ve done for me. I really want to give a very special thanks for the chef. You do a fine job. The cooking is mainly delicious. Today’s chicken Parmesan with spaghetti was better than ever. Thanks so much for the talent and love that you obviously put into all you do. You are most appreciated. Love to you all. With much gratitude!
Each morning Josephine looks at a drawing from granddaughter. Scribbled across the top are the words, “I love you, Grammy!” It’s Josephine’s connection to her family. They live 500 miles away, but they are always close to her heart. Josephine is 81. She’s lived alone since her husband passed away 14 years year ago. Independent and a self-described “stubborn old woman”, she finds it difficult to ask others for help. Simple tasks like cooking have become exhausting. Meals on Wheels of Tampa stepped in to help. Seven years later, Josephine is still “stubborn” and independent, but she is forever grateful for the wonderful volunteers who bring her a hot meal and a friendly smile each day. And her family – including her granddaughter – is comforted in knowing she is eating well.
Joe & Muriel have lived in the same house they purchased 65 years ago. They were in the dry cleaning business and worked hard all their lives. They sold the business several years ago and settled into their retirement and the dream of traveling and enjoying the fruits of their labors. Not long after, Joe developed macular degeneration and is now legally blind. Muriel, for a while, would shop and drive him to the doctor and grocery store, but it was difficult. So they became Meals On Wheels of Tampa recipients. They consider it a Godsend. Muriel lost the vision in her left eye, making it impossible for her to drive at all. The hot, nutritious meals delivered by Meals On Wheels of Tampa have now become a necessity, without which, their health and well-being would suffer.
Joe & Muriel
THE MEALS ON WHEELS MOVEMENT STARTS WITH YOU