When it comes to helping hands, Meals on Wheels Central Coast has around 280 pairs of them. Boasting one of the largest volunteer forces in the region, Meals on Wheels Central Coast has a proud tradition of volunteering that exceeds 50 years.Since their establishment in 1967, Meals on Wheels Central Coast has utilised the assistance of local residents, who willingly give up their time to help others in their community.
Volunteers are the life force of the Meals on Wheels Central Coast organisation. Performing numerous roles, the volunteers form an important social support network for many of our community members. Volunteers can be seen hand delivering meals to clients four days per week (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday), and can be recognised by their fluorescent vests and distinctive silver eskies. Each month over 530 clients receive personal meal deliveries from volunteers, who are always ready with a smile, and for a chat.
Unfortunately, a number of Meals on Wheels Central Coast clients are socially isolated, and a visit from a volunteer can not only provide much needed social interaction, but also provide a welfare check of sorts. Volunteers will happily take the meals into a client’s home, place these into the freezer for them, checking at the same time that meals are being eaten and there is enough storage room for them.
Another avenue where volunteers assist Meals on Wheel Central Coast is in the Community Restaurants where clients can enjoy a hot meal along with bingo and entertainment. Held at Bateau Bay, Woy Woy and West Gosford, the Community Restaurants are an ideal opportunity for clients to gather and enjoy a social outing, with transport able to be organised to and from the venues. Serving up meals, calling bingo numbers, assisting with set up and cleaning up after lunch, the volunteers help the smooth running of this essential service.
As part of Meals on Wheels Flexible Foods Program, volunteers provide one on one shopping assistance to clients. This invaluable program is in high demand and as such volunteers are currently being sought to assist on the Central Coast Peninsula. A program tailored specifically for men, Plates for Mates is an important social aspect in some Meals on Wheels Central Coast clients’ lives.
Led by a volunteer, male clients meet monthly at Ettalong to enjoy lunch and a blokey chat. Due to their constant contact with clients, some volunteers have formed close bonds with clients, going the extra mile to help brighten their lives.
The volunteer team is why Meals on Wheels Central Coast can offer the services that they do. The term ‘many hands make light work’ certainly applies to this organisation, with many volunteers having served loyally for a number of years.
Volunteers are currently needed for Community Restaurants, and for the Flexible Foods Program on the Peninsula. For more information, please contact Meals on Wheels Central Coast on 4357 8444.