Volunteers Keep Meals On Wheels Rolling Along

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For Massena resident Martha Wait, the visit by Meals on Wheels volunteer Michael Laforte means something a whole lot more than just receiving a hot lunch.

"I'm alone here and it gets me to talk to somebody every day," said Wait.
 
Last year, the Meals on Wheels program served close to 22,000 hot and cold meals - all delivered in and around the Massena area to homebound senior citizens and other socially isolated individuals by a team of volunteer drivers.

"I think it's rewarding," said Laforte.
 
There are 98 volunteers who make sure meals are delivered Monday through Friday.

Organizers say fewer volunteers could lead to fewer meals being delivered to those most in need.
 
"If we didn't have the volunteers, we wouldn't have a program," said Jessica Fregoe, Meals on Wheels director.
 
Massena's Meals on Wheels program will celebrate its 30th anniversary next year.

During that time, countless volunteers have devoted their time giving back to the community to keep the program running.
 
Some drivers, like Grant Badger and his wife, deliver meals throughout the week, while others volunteer occasionally on an as needed basis.

"You feel special knowing that we're helping others," said Grant Badger.
 
And, while the volunteers donate their time, vehicles and gas to make the deliveries, organizers say as the price of gas keeps creeping up and the more volunteers that help, the less those prices affect the drivers.
 
The majority of funding for the Meals on Wheels program comes from donations.

Thursday, October 23, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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