Government Shutdown Affects Meals on Wheels Deliveries

Organization has put out an urgent call to the public to help cover deliveries abandoned by military volunteers due to the government shutdown

By Elena Gomez and R. Stickney
|  Wednesday, Oct 16, 2013  |  Updated 12:38 PM PDT
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At one time, about 250 military volunteers delivered about 500 meals to seniors each week as a part of their community service according to Debbie Case, President/COO, of Meals on Wheels of Greater San Diego. NBC 7's Elena Gomez reports on why the government shutdown is jeopardizing the organization's deliveries to needy San Diegans.

At one time, about 250 military volunteers delivered about 500 meals to seniors each week as a part of their community service according to Debbie Case, President/COO, of Meals on Wheels of Greater San Diego. NBC 7's Elena Gomez reports on why the government shutdown is jeopardizing the organization's deliveries to needy San Diegans.

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Members of the U.S. military who are normally the backbone of San Diego’s Meals on Wheels service have left the organization without drivers because of the government shutdown, according to the organization’s president.

At one time, about 250 military volunteers delivered about 500 meals to seniors each week as a part of their community service according to Debbie Case, President/COO, of Meals on Wheels of Greater San Diego.

However, with the government shutdown, they can no longer volunteer with the organization.

Case said the military volunteers her organization used to count on have now been ordered to help with additional work due to the furlough.

“The seniors aren’t eating on time and with medications and the elderly, you need to keep that consistency on the time they’re going to eat,” Case said.

So instead of their regular duties, the organization’s staff has been helping to pack up food and deliver it.
But Case said they need the public’s help to continue to serve the hundreds of San Diegans that depend on their service.

Even if Congress reaches a deal to reopen the government Wednesday, Case said it will still take weeks for their military volunteers to come back.

The greatest need is the in the City of San Diego and surrounding areas along with South Bay including Chula Vista, National City, and San Ysidro.
 

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