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ElderCare offers meal program throughout its territory
new slt eldercare
From left to right: Kim Stein, Elke Andrasek, Kelly Beck and Lauri Henderson prepare to serve lunch at the Great Bend Senior Center. Businesses and individuals may now sponsor meals at the center through a new ElderCare Inc. program. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

                A program new to most of ElderCare’s service area allows participants to provide nutritious meals for the elderly, while helping the non-profit agency offset rising costs.

The meal-sponsorship program is open to any business or individual at ElderCare’s 40 Senior Centers in its 28-county territory, said Executive Director Brandi Gruber.

            The counties are from central Kansas to the Colorado and Oklahoma borders.

            “Those who donate will have the satisfaction of providing seniors with healthy meals, while helping us offset ever-increasing food costs,” Gruber said. “And they will help ensure that our programs will continue at our Senior Centers.

            “Our income from federal and state grants has remained the same during the last decade, while food and other costs have increased,” Gruber noted. “Meal sponsorships can help bridge this financial gap. If we don’t have donations and/or funding increases, our programs cannot survive.”

            Sponsors have choices about how they can help. It could be for one day, once a month or quarterly.

            For example, an average of 50 people eat at Great Bend’s Senior Center each weekday. Since the cost for each meal is $5.50, $275 would cover a day.

            The amount will vary at each Senior Center, depending on the average number of meals served.

            “Sponsors could do this just one time, or they could make it a regular part of their charitable giving,” Gruber commented. “This would be a wonderful gesture during this Thanksgiving and Christmas season, and maybe even part of a New Year’s Resolution to make a difference in our senior citizens’ lives.”

            In addition, business sponsors can raise awareness about their products and services. They may join Senior Center patrons at mealtime; provide a quick overview of their businesses; hand out business cards and brochures; and post a banner at the Senior Center.

            For more information, contact Gruber by calling 620-792-5942.