Meals on Wheels needs more volunteer drivers and helpers like Barrie Franklin. Volunteers can offer as much or as little time as they want just as long as they volunteer.
Meals on Wheels needs more volunteer drivers and helpers like Barrie Franklin. Volunteers can offer as much or as little time as they want just as long as they volunteer. Chris Ison

Meals on Wheels needs volunteers

MEALS on Wheels in Rockhampton is crying out for volunteers after a sharp drop in the number of locals lending a hand.

Rockhampton Fitzroy River Lions Club president Rob Willson, who is on the organisation's committee, said it normally had up to 250 volunteers, but it was now between 140 and 150.

Administration officer Melody Mallyon said numbers had declined dramatically and they needed more delivery drivers and helpers to drop off the meals to the elderly.

She said some volunteers were getting older, and this made it harder for them to put in the hours.

Ms Mallyon said its kitchen produced in excess of 1000 meals a week and its George St kitchen had reached capacity.

As well as the elderly, it also delivered meals through Allied Health Care to patients in hospital or palliative care.

Ms Mallyon said it was planning to build a bigger kitchen on Berserker St with land provided by the Rockhampton Regional Council.

She said demand was greater than ever with the increasing number of elderly people in the region.

“It (Meals on Wheels) keeps members of the community in their homes for longer.

"It keeps them out of institutions and eases the pressure on the health system.”

Ms Mallyon urged people to volunteer and take “pride in the community”.

Mr Willson said drivers and helpers, who worked in teams of two, could volunteer as little or as much as they wanted.

“You work to make a living, but you volunteer to make a life,” he said.

Contact Ms Mallyon on 4922 8052 if you would like to volunteer.

Drivers need their own vehicle and must be available between 10.30am and 1.30pm to make deliveries.

There is a fuel subsidy of $6 per day (depending on the run) which is offered to drivers.

Donations can be sent to Meals on Wheels at PO Box 680 Rockhampton.



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