Meals on Wheels San Antonio (MOWSA) is here to serve Atascosa County residents in need with home-delivered meals. Meals on Wheels is an essential service to thousands of clients every year and has been in Atascosa County since 2018.
On Monday, Commissioners Court approved a resolution certifying that the county will make a budgeted donation of $10,000 to Meals on Wheels San Antonio to be used in Atascosa County for the 2022 fiscal year. The budgeted donation is a significant increase from previous years.
Forrest Myane, Chief Development Officer for MOWSA, says the increase helps in many ways, including adding more clients. In the last fiscal year that just closed on June 30, MOWSA served a total of 30,000 meals to 193 residents in Atascosa County, an increase from 157 residents the prior year.
“About 7,500 of those meals were not funded in any way through either insurance or through a federal funding program. So, that means that we have to go out and raise the money to help support those meals,” said Myane. “The money that comes from Commissioners Court helps to support those meals and allows us to draw general revenue dollars from the Texas Department of Agriculture.”
The program called Texans Feeding Texans, supports home-delivered programs like MOWSA. However, there is a requirement for a county match.
“If the county doesn’t support us, then we can’t draw down those state dollars. So, the growth in the county’s [funds] enables us to serve more people and draw down more money from the state,” said Myane, who says the pandemic has unfortunately caused seniors who were already kind of isolated due to health problems to become more isolated and caused health problems to get worse. “We know there are more people who need Meals on Wheels now and it’s going to continue to go up, so this funding helps us to support a bigger number of people in Atascosa County.”
Thanksgiving is a big day for Meals on Wheels. Since COVID-19, they have gone from cold meals to hot meals on Thanksgiving. MOWSA comes to Atascosa County twice a week, giving them a chance be a wellness check for clients. Thanksgiving last year and this year are the only days MOWSA has served hot meals.
“We’re really excited. We love to deliver a hot meal,” said Myane. “We want seniors to get something that’s warm and ready to eat. So that’s an exciting thing, but we just want to make sure that we’re there for clients who don’t have anybody with them on Thanksgiving.”
MOWSA recruits volunteers from Atascosa County to help deliver meals. They meet at a specified location, hand out route sheets and meals, then go out and deliver meals to clients.
“We are also trying to start up a volunteer group initiative in the county. The idea of neighbor delivering to neighbor is a concept we really want to run with,” said Myane. “So, if anyone is interested in volunteering with us on Thanksgiving Day or throughout the year, they can sign up on our website.”
Volunteers can visit www.mowsatx.org/volunteer or call 210-735-5115 to sign up.
The best way to refer someone or yourself for Meals on Wheels services is to apply online at www.mowsatx.org/referral or call 866-80-MOWSA (866-806-6972). Eligibility for this service is holistic and not solely based on income or age.
Those who live in Atascosa County who are unable to cook for themselves, leave their home or drive may be eligible for Meals on Wheels meal delivery service. If someone does not fit this description, but needs assistance, they are encouraged to apply or call.