One of the things that makes Meals on Wheels special is the opportunity to take a “sidekick” along on your delivery route. Over the years the children and grandchildren of Shepherd’s Center Central volunteers been welcome helpers for Meals on Wheels.
“I started Meals on Wheels to get out of the house and do something that I could take my daughter with me. I knew about the program because my grandfather used to deliver, and I helped him a few times,” says volunteer Sibley Frye. “The clients loved having a child come to the door with me. They would ask about the girls if they weren’t with me.”
Not only did Sibley’s grandfather deliver Meals on Wheels, her mother, Kathy Smith is also a devoted driver for Shepherd’s Center Central. If her daughters (now in college) ever decide to volunteer, they’ll be the fourth generation of MOW drivers.
Sometimes children are so small it’s hard to explain exactly what “Meals on Wheels” involves. MOW volunteer Traci Angel, who began taking daughter Zara and son Jack along when they were 2 and 4, says “I explain we’re taking meals to people who need them. We talk about how hard it is for some people to go to the store or a restaurant. I want them to know that helping others is just something you do. And I hope they’ll have a better understanding and comfort level of what aging means, as well as how to treat people who are older or younger or look different than we do.”
And how would Jack and Zara describe their volunteer duties? Traci laughed, “I think they’d just say, ‘we are seeing our friends and taking them food’!”
Which is really what Meals on Wheels is all about, when you get right down to it.