This March, Senior Resources joins the Administration for Community Living and senior nutrition service providers across the country to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the national Senior Nutrition Program.
Since 1972, the Senior Nutrition Program has supported nutrition services for older adults. Funded by the Older Americans Act, local senior nutrition programs serve as hubs for older adults (60 and older) to access nutritious meals and other vital services that strengthen social connections and promote health and well-being.
“Over the last 50 years, Senior Nutrition Programs have proven to be a vital and economical service to keep older adults healthy and independent,” said Andrew Boozer, executive director of Senior Resources. “Through these meals and social connections with Meals on Wheels volunteers and at local senior center programs, seniors are able to live more fully in their own homes as they age. Nutrition programs not only provide a better quality of life, but they also save seniors, their families, and the healthcare system valuable resources as these programs prevent medical and institutional care. We celebrate the accomplishments of the last 50 years and look forward to the next 50 years of keeping seniors healthy.”
Senior nutrition is now more important than ever. Each year in the U.S., up to half of adults age 65 and older are at risk of malnutrition, and more than 10 million face hunger. According to the South Carolina Department on Aging (2022), our state will see nearly 1.8 million seniors in 2030, with nearly 11.5 percent currently living in poverty. In addition, over a third of seniors live on Social Security alone and over half of those over 55 years old have less than $50,000 saved for retirement. As the only provider of Meals on Wheels in Richland County, Senior Resources’ program currently serves over 600 homebound seniors with a hot, nutritious meal. The daily visit from the Meals on Wheels volunteer is often the only social interaction clients experience each day, so it also serves as an important safety check.
For 50 years, senior nutrition services have helped create healthy, strong communities where all members can flourish regardless of their age.
To commemorate this anniversary, Senior Resources hosted its own “Community Champions” which included local, state, and federal officials, local celebrities, and other prominent community figures delivering meals to Meals on Wheels clients. The organization also provided Meals on Wheels clients with additional support with a delivery of shelf stable food to keep for days of inclement weather or other emergencies and hygiene kits.
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