JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL)– More area seniors will be able to take part in the Meals on Wheels program thanks to a big donation from Wallace Subaru.

The Johnson City dealership presented a $48,392 check to the Northeast Tennessee chapter.

“We’re going to be able to feed more of our seniors in the area. It’s about maintaining people’s independence,” said Jason Cody, the Executive Director for Meals on Wheels of Northeast Tennessee. “That’s where our seniors want to be is to stay at home as long as possible and giving them a nutritional, a hot meal every day.”

Each day Meals on Wheels distributes 1,400 meals out of their Johnson City kitchen. Last year, they served 309,118 meals across the region.

“Coming out of Covid- there is a greater need,” said Cody. “Unfortunately the waiting list is growing for services like this as our population ages in place. There are more needs.”

The donation is part of the Subaru Share the Love event where the car maker and local dealerships donate money to a local or national charity of a car buyer’s choosing between November and January.

“There’s a lot of people in our community who are older and aging and getting a warm meal and having an interpersonal relationship with another human being is very important and we take it for granted- those of us who are able to get out of our house and do that,” said T.C. Baker, the executive manager of Wallace Subaru Johnson City. “Helping seniors maintain their independence and stay at home is something we’re committed to at the dealership.”

Subaru donates $250 and the dealership matches it. The national charities are Make a Wish, the National Parks Service, or the ASPCA.