Program is a month-long national celebration of the Meals on Wheels program and the seniors that depend on the service

The Molalla Adult Center announced it will participate in the 17th annual March for Meals. This is a month-long national celebration of the Meals on Wheels program and the seniors that depend on the service to stay healthy and independent at home. It's designed to raise funds and, at the same time, raise awareness of the program and its needs.

The Center has planned numerous activities throughout March including a REFIT® for Meals, which is a community-wide workout at NW Fitness & Strength on March 9 at 4p.m.; the annual Auction and Spaghetti Feed at the Adult Center on March 16; a "Sheldonoke" March for Meals Karaoke night at San Blas on March 23; a community-wide change drive; and a March for Meals fundraiser breakfast at the Adult Center on March 27 at 9 a.m.

"The services we provide are a lifeline for seniors in Molalla, Mulino and Colton and the need is rapidly increasing," said Cecily Rose, director of the Molalla Adult Community Center. "Together we can keep our senior neighbors well-nourished, feeling safer and more connected to our community as they age."

This is the sixth year the Molalla Center has participated in the national March for Meals. March is considered the month for fundraising, but it's also a time to bring awareness of the program to people. Fundraising has ranged between $514 and $2,500, Rose said, but this year with the fundraiser they hope to raise $1,500.

The Center sends meals out to seniors' homes, providing both the nutrition and someone to talk with to keep these people from being lonely. During 2018, it served more than 25,235 to seniors. A total of 25,235 meals were provided for those unable to cook for themselves last year. That number includes 20,352 meals that were delivered to homebound individuals, which shows an increase of more than 2,000 meals from 2017. More than 14,485 volunteer hours went into making, serving and delivering the food.

"The month of March is a fitting time to not only celebrate the successful history of Meals on Wheels, but bring us together to support a solution that will strengthen communities into the future," says Ellie Hollander, president and CEO of Meals on Wheels America.

March also commemorates March 22, 1972 when President Richard Nixon signed into law a measure amending the Older Americans Act of 1965 to add a nutrition program for seniors age 60 and older. Since 2002, community based Meals on Wheels programs from across the county have joined forces for the annual awareness campaign to celebrated the successful

With 12,000 Americans turning 60 each day, now is the time to invest in these vital programs so that we can provide every senior in need with nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that will enable them to live healthier and independent in their homes," Hollander said.

To find out more information about volunteering, contributing and speaking out for the seniors in the Molalla area this March, visit the Molalla Adult Community Center at 315 Kennel Ave. in Molalla or call Cecily Rose at 503-829-4214.

Carol Rosen
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