KOTA Cares: Meals on Wheels of western South Dakota needs volunteers

Updated: May. 18, 2023 at 6:30 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Many retirees find themselves on a fixed income, and with rising inflation hiking up the cost of groceries some are struggling to pay for basic necessities, like food and rent.

On this week’s KOTA Cares, we spotlight Meals on Wheels of Western South Dakota, an organization working to feed the elderly.

Meals on Wheels brings food to more than 3,500 home-bound senior citizens across western South Dakota.

But that number is growing, leaving the non-profit seeking volunteers.

Since January the organization has been adding two or three clients every day and the expansion to their home delivery routes makes the need for drivers urgent.

“We’re currently short about 10 to 15 volunteers. So, we’re needing to fill that gap cause we’ve been having to ask our current volunteers to sometimes drive twice a week where usually our volunteers deliver one day a week,” said Tim Schnider, community resource coordinator for Meals on Wheels of Western South Dakota.

Meals on Wheels delivers food Monday through Friday. Typically, a volunteer will make 10 to 15 stops on their route.

Along the way, they offer a level of companionship to elderly clients by offering a listening ear and a kind smile.

“You just have a sense of accomplishment when you’ve gone out and helped them. Getting to know the seniors is a wonderful experience, added Schnider. They’ve paved the way for our generation so, it’s nice to give back to the generation before us.”

Last year, Meals on Wheels made and delivered more than 400,000 meals to people in 68 communities across western South Dakota.

Volunteers must be over the age of 18 and have a valid driver’s license. Meals on Wheels also offers a gas credit for mileage while delivering food.

For more information about how you can become a volunteer click here.

To donate to this week’s KOTA Cares, Meals on Wheels of Western South Dakota click here.