(WJHL) — A good meal, and a warm smile. Those are the two gifts offered to clients in the Meals on Wheels program. The organization relies heavily on volunteers, so team members with Holston Medical Group step in to help.
“That is a wonderful feeling to know you’ve made a difference in somebody’s life,” said coordinator Liza Harmond.
A lot of volunteers are needed to serve 233 clients a day, five days a week. Harmon says if you give your time once, you’ll be hooked. She first agreed to volunteer back in the 1980s.
“It’s the best ‘yes’ I ever said,” she said. “It was a blast, I started to meet other volunteers, I loved the organization. Every single moment of my time was spent going straight toward something that helped recipients.”
Each week, it takes 200 volunteers to keep the program moving, from meal preparers to drivers. And Harmon says volunteers are always needed.
“We have two cooking teams each day, we have 14 driving teams, so all-in-all, our agency requires about 500 volunteers each month,” she said.
Volunteers like Amy Honeycutt, who, with other Holston Medical group team members, volunteers her time with Meals On Wheels.
“This team all works together,” Honeycutt said. “But it gets us to work together a little more closely, and gets us to do things outside of work, so it’s good. And it’s a fun activity for us to do.”
Honeycutt says her team is proud to help with the organization’s mission.
“We see so many people in the community who eat non-nutritious food,” she explained. “They eat junk food because it’s cheap. So, being able to provide meals for those people helps them get nutrition they might not otherwise have.”
And that’s what makes her time with Meals On Wheels well-spent.
“We have great opportunity to make a huge difference in the community itself,” says Harmon.