Neighborly needs more volunteers to help deliver meals to seniors during the holidays

Meals on Wheels delivery to a senior resident
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Neighborly is delivering nearly 10,000 meals per week to thousands of seniors in Pinellas County. This nonprofit is doing the work to help the elderly community in the Sunshine City and beyond; their work is exceedingly vital as more and more seniors deal with isolation during the pandemic.

Now, Neighborly is looking for help in the community. They’re asking those with the time to volunteer and help deliver meals to those who need it most. It’s your chance to be a lifeline. Organizers hope to add more than 200 new volunteers to their roster as they begin to expand their client list in Pinellas County.

This is quite literally the sweetest volunteer gig around

Why?

For some of its clients, the volunteer who delivers the meal may be the only person they get to see that day. Even if it’s just a gentle hello through the screen of a door, every little bit of kindness stretches far beyond the short interaction. You become a part of their life. As one client said as I walked back to my car after dropping off a meal, “Bless you. Thank you. See you soon.”

I can say from experience that the smiles on the faces of the clients offer an unparalleled rush of serotonin. Neighborly is currently in the process of applying for grants that will help it further expand its list of clients.

Out of just one location, they can provide more than 220 meals in a single morning. Staff are up early making sure every package is properly labeled and sorted, each volunteer route is carefully mapped, and all carryout bags are effectively sealed.

You can begin the process of applying to volunteer, and learn a bit more about the nonprofit by clicking HERE. 

All you need is a car and 2 hours per week

“Everything Neighborly does is focused on keeping seniors independent and in their homes,” said Hilary Douglass, Community Engagement Manager for Neighborly Care. “As we endeavor to take 500 clients off of our waiting list, we’re going to need approximately 100 volunteers to get those seniors what they need.”

Often, it’s the volunteers who drop off the food that help encourage the recipient to sit down and enjoy it, too. Some clients may have a lesser appetite, or forget to eat altogether. Your presence and delivery again provide that essential lifeline to health and nutrition.

Neighborly first launched back in 1966, and it’s one of the oldest Meals on Wheels program in the entire country.

If you don’t have the time, but still want to help this nonprofit, consider donating to Neighborly

Send Happy Thoughts to Seniors

The nonprofit also launched a Happy Thoughts for Seniors campaign. Folks are encouraged to write sweet cards with messages of hope and love for Neighborly’s large list of clients. Your words can literally brighten someone’s day.

The notes can be mailed/delivered to Neighborly’s Evergreen office at 13945 Evergreen Ave., 4th Floor, Clearwater, Fl 33762. Volunteers will then sort and distribute the notes among its sites in the region.

This is your opportunity to do some good in the community. Click HERE to learn more about volunteer opportunities and donations at Neighborly.

Volunteer with a friend

This is your opportunity to do some good in the community. Click HERE to learn more about volunteer opportunities and donations at Neighborly. 

These opportunities are open to pairs too. Find a good friend, a family member, or your significant other and spend the morning bringing smiles to faces across the city. 

Written by Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan is the Editor of ilovetheburg.com. Follow him on Twitter @harlanyoungII and Instagram @harlanyoung. Send tips and potential stories to info@ilovetheburg.com.