But there’s one thing that hasn’t changed, and that’s the reliability of a caring staff member delivering a daily hot, nutritious meal to seniors across the county with their Meals on Wheels service.
Friendship Centers’ mission is to provide need-based, simple assistive care services to seniors in Emmet County, allowing older adults to remain living in their own homes. It’s particularly important work here in Northern Michigan, where aging in place can be a challenge; but the care provided with a daily visit and a hot meal goes miles toward helping seniors remain independent. As one client recently shared: “It’s such a peace of mind that someone other than family is around to check on me almost daily.”
Each visit allows for a chance to chat, to check in on a senior and ensure they have everything they need. “Sometimes that meal delivery is the only personal contact they’ll have all day,” says Friendship Centers Executive Director Denneen Smith.
Because of the pandemic, the need for meals has increased, in particular, because the centers currently cannot welcome 80-plus people for daily lunch on-site. More than 160 hot meals head out each day, as well as bags of frozen meals for holidays and weekends.
Even though Friendship Centers offer daily meals for a suggested donation of $3, they’re happy to receive nothing more than a grateful smile and a “thank you.” However, the cost to the center has risen since the pandemic to more than $10 per meal—a difference made up for by generous donations from the surrounding community. To help with their mission, visit emmetcoa.org to make an online donation.
This Article Was First Featured in Northern Michigan GIVE 2021
Read more Northern Michigan nonprofit stories and learn how to donate and volunteer in the free edition of MyNorth GIVE 2021. You can also preview and purchase our digital issues Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine or subscribe and get Traverse delivered to your door each month.
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