As a recent guest on Mary Furlong’s “What’s Next Longevity Deal Talk” podcast, Home Instead Global Advocacy Officer Jisella Dolan highlighted the Home Instead and Meals on Wheels partnership designed to combat social isolation in older adults.
Dolan was joined by Erika Debrick Kelly from Meals on Wheels, as well as podcast hosts Mary Furlong and Fred Fishkin. Other featured guests included: Ted Fischer of Ageless Innovation and author Dr. Michael Roizen, creator of the Longevity Playbook app. Watch the episode here.
“We think it’s a wonderful opportunity for all of us to come together,” says Dolan of the partnership, ”to make a change and to really help neighbor-to-neighbor older adults across our country, and the world.”
The Home Instead and Meals on Wheels partnership kicked off May 15-19, 2023 with the “Power of a Knock” campaign, where Home Instead will match $2 for every $1 donated to Meals on Wheels, up to $50,000. Home Instead also is committing an additional $90,000 to underwrite an inaugural volunteer award that recognizes the tremendous contributions of the individuals who bring the mission to life.
The funding will support the local efforts of three winning volunteers’ Meals on Wheels organizations. In addition to national initiatives, many members of the Home Instead franchise network will support local Meals on Wheels programs across America through volunteering and other efforts.
“You’ll see it come to life in many different ways over the coming months and we’re so excited,” says Dolan.
“We are two leadership organizations working together answering the call, to be a part of ending loneliness and social isolation,” adds Kelly.
Partnership Combats Hunger + Loneliness
In the podcast, Dolan and Kelly explain that the partnership is a timely one, coming on the heels of the recent U.S. Surgeon General’s report declaring loneliness and social isolation an epidemic. Older adults are one of the most at-risk groups.
Meals on Wheels is focused on addressing nutrition needs by delivering a nourishing meal, but also aims to provide a friendly visit and conversation to the older adults it serves.
As Dolan and Kelly explain, for some older adults in this country, the knock at the door from Meals on Wheels may be the only social interaction that person has all day or all week.
“The knock on the door delivers a nourishing meal but also a friendly visit and a conversation,” says Kelly. “Nourishing lives is what Meal on Wheels does.
It’s about nutrition and human connections.”
That mission is perfectly aligned with that of Home Instead, providing personal care services to make life easier for older adults and their families. Home care not only provides vital services like nurse-directed care, meal prep and transportation but is also a source of companionship.