The change was prompted by the loss of the local program's only volunteer driver. With its volunteer driver moving out of the area, the 30-year-old program could no longer continue.
Catholic Charities has run the senior dining program at the Paynesville Area Center since July 1991. They agreed to add home delivered meals to their program.
The number of meals generated by the home delivered meals program will help the meal count at the dining site, assuring that the program will continue in Paynesville.
The meals will be prepared by the senior dining program at the Paynesville Area Center then delivered to homes by volunteers.
Volunteer drivers are still needed to continue the program through the senior dining. The meals are delivered to homes around noon each day.
Linda Manz, senior dining site coordinator in Paynesville, said it would be nice to have several volunteer drivers so they wouldn't be driving daily. She is planning to divide the current route into two separate routes, making them shorter and easier for the drivers.
She will also be making a monthly schedule, so volunteers can choose days that are convenient for them.
Since Catholic Charities also runs delivery program in neighboring towns, these programs will assume the responsi-bility for some residents living far away from Paynesville, Manz said. "This will eliminate some of the out of town driving," she added.
The driver who takes meals to the Belgrade dining site will also deliver meals enroute.
Anyone interested in being a volunteer driver should contact Manz at the senior dining program. She can be reached by calling 320-243-4575 between the hours of 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
To save driving, frozen meals are an option for residents living in rural areas. Manz said they will prepare and deliver seven different frozen meals at a time. Volunteer drivers would then only have to make one stop a week to those living further away from Paynesville.
The home delivered meals program was started in Paynesville more than 30 years ago by the late Gladys Deadrick. A board was established to run the program following Deadrick's death in 1991.
The Good Samaritan Care Center and Paynesville Area Hospital have been preparing the meals for the program. Up to 20 meals are distributed daily to individuals in town and neighboring communities. The home delivered meals program delivers about 400 meals per month.
"We don't want to abandon the program started by Gladys," said Jeff Bertram, board member. He feels Catholic Charities will enhance her original program. Her home delivered meals program was the only program in the state paid for by community donations, he added.
Some of the money the board has received to fund the program over the years will go to Catholic Charities to help fund its program. A Dollars for Scholars scholarship in Gladys Deadrick's name is also being estab-lished.
"All future donations will be turned over to Catholic Charities to help with the meals," Bertram added.
Anyone 60 years of age and older Ð and their spouse, regardless of age Ð is eligible to be served home delivered meals. The suggested contribution for a meal is $2.50. All meals provide one-third of the recommended daily dietary allowances. Special accommodations can be made for diabetic meals, and low fat and low salt diets.
On days of inclement weather the dining site will be closed. Closings are posted over 1340-KWLM (Willmar) and 1150-KASM (Albany).
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