Seniors get “shelf meals” in case of bad winter weather

Food boxes are packed up for Wood County seniors.

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN

BG Independent News

 

Like squirrels putting away nuts for the winter, food is being boxed for seniors throughout Wood County.

About 850 “shelf meals” were packed up recently at the Wood County Senior Center. The boxes will be delivered to the seniors who receive home delivered meals from the Wood County Committee on Aging.

The goal is to make sure the seniors have food available in case inclement weather makes it impossible for the home delivered meals to make it to them.

“If those individuals can’t get out of their house, and we can’t get to them because of the weather,” explained Angie Bradford, director of food services at the senior center. “It’s those extra two meals if we can’t get to them.”

The Wood County Committee on Aging used to hand out pre-packed shelf meals, but found the quality lacking. Some of the food was not intended for long-term storage, Bradford said. Such was the case with canned pears one year. “They all exploded in my storeroom,” she said.

So now the volunteers pack the boxes themselves.

Bradford enlisted the help of people served by Wood County Developmental Disabilities to pack up the boxes.

One can of beef stew, two peanut butter packets, powdered milk, corn, green beans, peaches and more.

“It’s been a great partnership,” Bradford said.

Those packing the boxes enjoy the work, she said. “Phyllis was asking about it in August.”

As she packed cans in the boxes, Phyllis Layman explained her motivation. “I like helping people.”

Tricia Romero agreed. “We want to be able to give back to the community.”