CALL: Barb Umber @ 422-3296

Position Description For Volunteer Driver

Volunteer drivers of Homebound Meals will pick up two coolers, one with hot food and one with cold food from Rehabilitation Hospital at Lutheran, Saint Joseph Hospital, or Parkview Randallia. There will be a clip board for each driver which will give the directions to each client’s home. There are no more than 12 clients on each route. The time required to run a route is rarely more than an hour and a half. The coolers are  returned to the pick up location (unless you choose to use your own). The volunteer driver drives their own vehicle. Meals are delivered Monday through Friday during the noontime hour. Most volunteers drive 1 time per week.  We are ALWAYS in need of volunteers.

Driving schedules can be flexible as many of the drivers go away for the winter or summer. Some will go away for long vacations.  We are also always in need of substitute drivers – for those who are more adventurous! 

Sometimes, You’re Just Glad to Help****

Six meals delivered, three more to go. Now you’re at her place again. You’ve delivered to her before, and you never fail to be touched by her existence. You wonder how she is doing today.

You pull the little foil tray and sack containing her meal out or your car and work your way into her apartment building or house.

You know she doesn’t hear all that well anymore, so you announce your arrival with a loud knock.

BAM! BAM! BAM! “Homebound Meals!”

“Just a minute.” The answer comes in a weak, yet fetching voice. You’re the only person she will actually see in the flesh today, and she doesn’t want to appear too frail. After all, we all carry our pride, no matter how long we live. You wonder, while you wait, what she did with her life. Was she a career woman? Did she have children?

No matter what the answer, you’re just happy to be able to help. When she makes it to the door, you’re pleased to see that she is still getting around. It’s great that she has her own home. She invites you in with a bit of a smile. You’ve seen those photos on the wall before, the ones where she looks to be about 15 years younger, posed next to a fellow with whom she built her life. Now, she keeps the photos in prominent view, to hold onto the memories. The apartment is cluttered, decades crammed into a space that is way too small. Cluttered, yet tidy. And clean. She wouldn’t have it any other way.

With a minute or so of idle chatter, you place the meal where she wants it. You would love to stay and visit a bit, but –there are more meals to deliver, and your next stop is a diabetic, she just can’t wait all that long for her meal. So, with a final question, “Are you doing OK? Do you need anything?” You head to the car, and to the next delivery.

You’re delighted that “Homebound Meals” exists. Hey. Whoever started this good work! After all, we humans are social animals, we all love to be with others, and “HBM’s” volunteers provide that, if only for a brief moment. You know the value of the meals, how older folks have specific nutritional needs, and how every meal from “HBM’s” is prepared with those needs in mind. Good nutrition is critical to how she feels, and the meal you’ve just delivered is part of what enables her to stay in her own home. You’re pleased about that.

And you’re pleased that you and the other volunteers like you, are there delivering “HBM”. Or preparing the meals, or packing them in those little foil containers for delivery. You know what it all means. That’s why you are willing to give those few hours just to help.

Anonymous young volunteer in London once said, “I get paid for my voluntary work. I just do not get paid money.” How true. You can’t really explain what you earn by volunteering for “HBM”, because somehow it just doesn’t compute in today’s material world. But no matter. You don’t have to qualify it: you don’t have to explain it to anyone. You know what you’ve accomplished, and what it means to those you’ve helped. Now the next stop.

****The above narrative was received from The Reynolds Kitchen based on a narrative from a Meals on Wheels volunteer in Virginia.

Most drivers will deliver food once a week.