Meals-on-Wheels on federal chopping block

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The CEO of a Richmond organization that works to feed hungry seniors reacted today to proposed Federal Budget cuts to the Meals-on-Wheels program.

Doug Pick, the CEO of FeedMore, said that he was surprised when he heard the White House Budget Director say that Meals-on-Wheels is a program that does not work or show results.

“When I heard it and saw it, it was deeply disconcerting, because it’s misinformed and it’s ill-timed,” Pick said. “There’s no better investment in this country of your tax dollars than Meals-on-Wheels … One year of meals from Meals-on-Wheels equals one day of intensive care for a senior. These meals keep them at home, keep them safe, keep them healthy, and out of the hospital.”

Pick said that the program serves 800 seniors a day and that it delivers and prepares from scratch about 1000 meals each day.

The program is carried out by a mere 20 paid employees and 125 volunteers.

According to Meals-On-Wheels workers, the recipients are diverse and many are home-bound, so they look forward to seeing the volunteers.

Pick added that the federal government funds 23 percent of its budget.

Although he does not know how much the government may slash his organization’s budget, he said he is confident Richmond residents will come through to support the program if the worst-case scenario happens.

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