2018 was a year of big changes and exciting moments at Edmonton Meals on Wheels. From advancements in the kitchen to surprise delivery guests, it was a year for the books! Let’s take a look back at some special highlights:
- June marked a monumental shift for Edmonton Meals on Wheels. Since 1969, our staff and volunteers had been serving up hot meals for clients in need. Through careful planning and conversations with clients, other Meals on Wheels organizations, and more, we were able to determine that chilled meals were the way of the future. Being able to pack in an even better taste, more nutrients, and tastier texture are all just added bonuses to the switch. Because of this change, we have been able to help more isolated Edmontonians than ever before. Thank you to everyone that made this switch possible. Click here learn more about Chef’s Choice Daily Meals.
- Thanks to a one-time grant from the City of Edmonton, we have been able to extend kitchen hours, utilizing our kitchen space to its full extent. Having the ability to cook and prepare for extra hours in the evening has been vital in supporting the switch to chilled meals. It has also opened the doors to helping more clients and has made room for several more volunteer positions.
- Climbing up to about 60%, 2018 has seen the highest number of clients needing extra help in the form of meal subsidy rates. To be able to provide this extra assistance for clients in need, fundraising efforts have gone into overdrive. We are happy to say that with two tiers of meal subsidy rates, low-income, homebound Edmontonians have received the help that they need. Click here to donate to help support our subsidy programs.
- Now serving more communities than ever! Thanks to our Chef’s Choice Frozen Meal program and the help of surrounding communities, more people than ever have access to healthy meals. In 2018, Gibbons and Yellowhead County (which includes Evansburg, Entwistle, Peers, Mackay, Seba Beach, and Wildwood) all came on board as ‘outlets’ that serve our tasty frozen meals. This means that people in these communities now have access to our homemade, healthy, portion-controlled entrees, as well as our soups and sweets. These additions in 2018 mean that we are now serving eleven communities outside of Edmonton.
- Spring 2018 brought many new faces to our team. On May 20th, we launched our first ever #30in30 campaign in which the goal was to add 30 new volunteers to our regular schedule in 30 days. Surpassing the original goal, 36 new volunteers joined the Meals on Wheels team. Thank you to everyone that signed up to make a difference! Click here to become a volunteer, today.
- Over 5,500 pounds of produce was donated to this year’s Grow-A-Row program! The benefits of over five thousand pounds of garden fresh veggies? The two-fold advantages include reduced kitchen costs as well as an even better menu for clients to enjoy. A menu that is even tastier, healthier, and more creative is a something that we are happy to offer clients, with the help of Grow-A-Row donors!
- More use of programs means a growing staff! This year, we introduced new roles to the Meals on Wheels culinary team, as well as a Store to Door coordinator position. This means that low-income clients who depend on grocery shopping services now have a dedicated person to assist them in the setup of the program, while the kitchen roles help with the new extended kitchen hours.
- Ever since we met her on a cloudy Friday, we can’t believe how much we love the rain. In Late April, right before Edmonton Meals on Wheels’ 49th anniversary, Chantal Kreviazuk joined the team to see what Meals on Wheels is all about. She sang , shared stories, and delivered meals to some of our most isolated clients, leaving each one of them smiling ear to ear. Making a difference wherever she goes, we were very lucky to have Chantal’s help.
Lastly, we would like to congratulate former Board member and current volunteer, Bill Chrapko, on receiving the Minister’s Senior Service Award, this past year. This impressive honor recognizes Albertans that make a difference in the lives of seniors and their communities. With Bill having donated over 27 years to Edmonton Meals on Wheels, we are so happy to continue to have his help!