The Meals on Wheels service in the Amman Valley has always had high demand. However, with the increased vulnerabilities created by the Covid 19 pandemic, this has increased dramatically. In addition to providing an essential lifeline to your fellow residents, this is a great way to get involved with your local community. This service provides healthy meals for those who may not otherwise enjoy a properly cooked meal. You can volunteer for just a couple of hours a week or for longer if you wish. You will join a team that is supporting the elderly and others in your local community.
Who can volunteer?
Anyone over the age of 18 can volunteer to help out with the service. If you have a driving licence you will be especially welcome as drivers are in particular demand; although non-drivers to assist with preparation of the meals, loading of vehicles and other duties are very welcome too.
Who uses the service?
In addition to the elderly other users of meals on wheels services include disabled people, people with learning difficulties and people in recovery from accidents or hospital treatment. There are also service users that have only recently found themselves in need of support as a result of shielding, high risk from Covid 19 or providing care for someone who is. You will gain the satisfaction of making a difference to their day by providing them with a nutritious meal. You may also be their only visitor that day and so can provide companionship or a simple smile and chat… often equally as welcome, and important, as the meals you will be providing.
How does the service work?
Food is usually prepared at a central point (Garnant Golf Club) and you will go there to collect it. Meals may be hot or frozen for those who are able to warm meals up. Individuals will have completed a service agreement with the service provider and this will cover how often they receive a meal and whether the meal is heated or frozen. In many cases hot meals are only provided for those who are housebound and unable to operate an oven to heat a meal for themselves.
In most cases there is a nominal charge for the meals and part of your role as a volunteer could be to collect such payments. Meals cater for a wide variety of tastes and dietary requirements and there will usually be options including gluten-free, vegetarian and halal or other options to meet specific religious requirements.
Is there more to the role?
As you are dealing with some of your community’s most vulnerable members an important part of your role will be to pass the time of day with each client and to listen to see whether they have any personal worries or concerns. If you take on the role regularly then you will develop a relationship with the people you visit. This could be one of the most rewarding aspects of volunteering with meals on wheels. Should you have any concerns for a service users wellbeing then you can report this to the service provider or contact Robert Venus (Safeguarding Officer, Cwmaman Town Council). All concerns are treated with respect and passed to the relevant authority as needed.
Deliveries may vary from two or three times a week to seven days a week depending on availability and need. You should be able to volunteer for as many or as few days as is convenient provided you can commit to a regular time slot. With such a vital service it is important to be reliable to ensure that vulnerable members of community receive the nutrition they need.
More information and discuss the role…
You can contact Robert Venus by email to discuss this role and for signposting to the service provider. Please complete the short form below to register interest and receive a followup call.