Mayor Parker Delivers For Meals On Wheels
by: Carrie Feibel, April 23, 2012 10:04:00 pm
The truck stops outside a small rental house and Mayor Parker swings open the side doors.
She takes out a sealed tray of meatloaf and mashed potatoes and then moves over to the refrigerated side.
“I have a hot meal, I have an apple, I have some low fat milk and a piece of whole wheat bread. It’s hot coming out of the truck and the milk is nice and cold so it’s all ready to eat.”
She climbs up the porch and steps inside. She’s here to meet 80-year-old Mary Alice Taylor.
Mary Alice Taylor worked for 57 years but now suffers from arthritis. She receives a daily lunch from Interfaith Ministries’ Meals on Wheels program.
Taylor lives alone and is partially blind. She also has arthritis.
“I’m Annise Parker, nice to meet you!”
Taylor: “Oh you the one be on TV all the time, oh my God I got to meet you, how wonderful…”
Taylor: “I don’t want to go nowhere. All the people that know me, I’m the oldest one on this street, so everybody know me.”
Mayor: “Well, we’re going to try to keep you in your house as long as we can.”
Texas ranks fourth among states when it comes to food insecurity among seniors.
Almost nine percent of Texas seniors are hungry or at at-risk for hunger, not always knowing where the next meal will come from. Parker says that’s inexcusable:
“We live in the richest country in the history of the earth. And there is plenty of food in America for everybody who needs food. We don’t always distribute it efficiently, and for various reasons – age or disability, lack of resources — people may not be able to access the food that we have, sometimes they need a little helping hand and that’s what we’re doing today.”
For the first time in a few years, Meals on Wheels now has a waiting list for services.
Interfaith Ministries CEO Elliot Gershenson says the demand for services will continue to grow as the Baby Boomers age.
He also anticipates that the federal and state governments will cut back on direct aid for food programs.