Lorna Hoare, a volunteer driver with Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels, delivers a nutritious meal to an elderly client. (Submitted photo)

Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels ‘breathing sigh of relief’ after food provider steps up

But charity is now in ‘desperate’ need of volunteers

Operators of Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels say they are “thrilled” after their food provider has decided to continue cooking for the charity.

In June, the group issued a “desperate” call for a new partner after their current supplier had told them it was “moving on.” Without a new kitchen found by Sept. 1, the charity said it wouldn’t have food to deliver to those in need.

But that provider has changed their tune and has come up with an “alternate arrangement,” explained Christine Morettin, administrator of the organization.

Morettin said “it’s a godsend” because the group was coming up empty in its efforts to find a new company to cook food for its nearly 100 clients who depend on them for hot, nutritious meals delivered each weekday.

“When I was checking out other suppliers, some of the increases it would’ve cost, then to pass onto the client, would’ve been totally outrageous,” said Morettin. “They might as well have phoned Skip the Dishes. It was hard to find a provider with what we consider a reasonable cost.”

READ ALSO: Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels in ‘desperate’ search for new partner

Under the new arrangement with their supplier – who has asked to remain anonymous – there will be slight changes to the meal program.

“It’s just their kitchen will be preparing in the evenings, and instead of the hot meal we’ll be delivering a freshly prepared but cold meal. So the client will be reheating,” Morettin told the Now-Leader.

“Honestly, we’re breathing a sigh of relief, the board and everyone, because we didn’t know if we could keep going or not.”

Morettin said Fraser Health has also stepped up to increase its contribution to the charity, as well.

While things are looking up, Morettin said the charity is in “desperate” need of more volunteers.

“We’re majorly short of volunteers,” she said. “The volunteers get older and they retire, most of them are already retired. But now they retire from us. If we can get people who are interested for even one day a week, three hours, that would be just delightful. We have some of our volunteers driving two or three days a week right now.”

A release notes that volunteer drivers for the charity delivered 18,812 hot meals and 3,715 bagged lunches last year alone. Many of their clients are low-income seniors, people with mobility challenges or people with mental illness.

Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels has served the communities of North Surrey, North Delta and Cloverdale since 1970.

To learn more or to donate, visit sndmow.com.

SEE ALSO: Surrey-North Delta Meals on Wheels loses annual funding grant



amy.reid@surreynowleader.com

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