The Senior Meal Program provides food to seniors in Houghton and Keweenaw County. It is divided into two parts, one for homebound seniors and the other is for seniors who are still able to drive.
â??We serve one meal a day five days a week but for seniors that are absolutely unable to cook for themselves, we provide more frozen meals for the weekend so they can have a seven day meal program,â?? said Program Director Jennifer Szubielak.
There are seven sites where seniors can drive to enjoy their meals with other seniors all throughout the Keweenaw. One meal is delivered each day. It has all the nutrients they need from vegetables to beef stew for protein and sometimes dessert.
Deliveries are not just to drop-off meals. Director Jennifer Szubielak says sometimes it may be the only visit and camaraderie seniors receive.
â??The benefit for the home delivery program is that they do have someone checking in on them and saying hi, a friendly word,â?? said Szubielak.
Jim suffers from celiac disease and is very grateful for the assistance. The program works with dietitians from Portage Health to make sure he gets the gluten-free meals he needs, and he says the program is a tremendous help, and the food is pretty tasty.
â??It makes it possible by not being institutionalized among other things, and also the food is so good. Eating is really an adventure with what they bring, and itâ??s so nice to have people who are dedicated to doing something to help us old guys.â??
Nearly 100,000 meals are delivered every year. The program is not based on income and to qualify, seniors just have to be over the age of 60.