Meals on Wheels: Home delivery service gets a fresh look
Meals on Wheels of Northampton County's new logo not only offers a fresh look but also a fresh take for this 42-year-old social service organization.
In addition to the new logo, fresh ingredients from local farms and expanded programs are key features to the MOW vision for the future.
"Our plan is to expand our existing services and create some new services to better meet the needs of the community," said Debra Ghia, vice president of MOW's Board of Directors.
More than 70 people attended an Aug. 12 unveiling of the new logo and were treated to a taste test of the new culinary offerings at the Meals on Wheels of Northampton County's offices. MOW is located at 4240 Fritch Drive in Bethlehem.
Prepared by MOW's three chefs who have more than 50 years of cooking experience, menu offerings included vegetarian tofu stroganoff, pork tenderloin with a brandy applesauce and fresh peach cobbler and a cucumber salad. Local farm contributors for the entrees were Scholl Orchards of Bethlehem and Twin Maple Farms of Bath.
Nick Nonnemacher, director of MOW's Food Services, said that partnering with local farms brings fresh vegetables like corn, zucchini, eggplant and tomatoes to the chef's meal preparations. Recently, 550 pounds of zucchini were delivered to the MOW kitchens.
Faced with reduced government funding and rising food, energy and labor costs, MOW is focused on thinking of new ways to generate revenue to fulfill its mission of delivering meals to homebound seniors and the disabled, said Executive Director JoAnn Bergeron Nenow at the logo unveiling ceremony.
As the Lehigh Valley's aging population grows, so does the need for in-home support services to enable seniors to "age in place" in their homes, Nenow added.
Changing the MOW logo from the traditional wheel to a leaf is only a small part of the organization's rebranding efforts. Continuing its mission to "bring a meal and a smile" to clients' homes, MOW hopes to expand its heart-healthy, nutritional meal-delivery program by partnering with other in-home care service providers, by collaborating with hospitals to assist with the transition from hospital to home and by providing nutrition services to additional populations, Nenow said.
Ghia hopes MOW's rebranding efforts dispel the old myths the community has that the meals are not very good and the meal-delivery service is only for the poor or people over the age of 60. Also that MOW is funded completely by the government.
Ghia said that government sources make up only 26 percent of MOW's budget. MOW's state-of-the-art kitchens and experienced chiefs are keys to preparing nutritional, tasty and appealing dishes to home-delivery clients, as well as senior centers and childcare centers.
Services MOW provides include:
Home-delivered, hot, low-fat, low-sodium and low-cholesterol meals at lunchtime and a cold bag supper. Clients are charged on a sliding income scale. Weekend meals are delivered frozen on Fridays.
Ani-Meals, a free service, makes available to current home-delivery customers pet food for dogs, cats, birds and fish. These donated food items are delivered during regularly scheduled meal deliveries.
For those who wish to eat healthy but prefer not to cook or are unable to prepare a meal due to recuperating from a hospital stay, there are Chef's Packs. Each pack contains 17 entrees and two soups.
For a small fee, MOWs' volunteers will do the grocery shopping for homebound and disabled individuals.
For more information on MOW services or to volunteer, contact www.mealsonwheelspa.org or call 610-691-1030.