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Meals On Wheels program asking for support as needs continue to increase

Silver Key says inflation and gas prices put strain on volunteer drivers
Meals On Wheels program asking for support as needs continue to increase
Posted at 5:06 AM, Mar 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-21 07:06:49-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — Silver Key is working through a month-long celebration of the meals on wheels program aiming to raise awareness about the importance of the program and the challenges it faces to continue to meet people’s needs in the years to come. 

There has been a 71% increase in demand for “Meals On Wheels” since the start of the pandemic. Silver Key says in our communities it delivered more than 51,000 meals last year. 

The program continues to move all over town as volunteers package and deliver meals to seniors. This gives them an opportunity to also check-in on those who might be lonely or might not see anyone else otherwise. 

This is such an important service, but at times this operation is struggling to keep up with demand as volunteers try to overcome challenges of their own. 

"Again, as those fuel costs rise more and more people are saying I can't drive throughout town to deliver these meals, so it's a challenge getting those volunteers to be a part of it, to want to continue to do it in these trying times," said Derek Wilson of Silver Key. 

Silver Key hopes to raise awareness about this program during the rest of the month and wants to inspire people to help meet the needs of those who rely on the “Meals On Wheels” program, the safety checks, and the human interaction it provides.

Leaders at Silver Key say the research shows the need in the Pikes Peak Region is growing rapidly as our community is home to an increasing number of aging americans. 

"The Pikes Peak Region is growing at double the national average for senior increase. In fact, those over 85 300% more than the national average. So, we are seeing a huge growth in seniors who are coming back to this region or that have stayed in this region and they are aging in place and we want them to do so with dignity and independence," said Wilson. 

If you would like to find out more information on how to donate, volunteer, or sign up for the “Meals On Wheels” program visit https://www.silverkey.org/ or you can call 719-884-2300 

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