Meals on Wheels honors volunteers at annual meeting

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 28, 2019

At the 43rd annual meeting of Meals on Wheels Rowan, volunteers were recognized and received awards and a new board of directors was named.

Amy Ritchie received the President’s Award. Ritchie was chairwoman of the Program Task Group, managing and summarizing participant satisfaction surveys and recruiting volunteers. Ritchie also coordinates one of the volunteer delivery teams from St. John’s Lutheran Church.

Irene Beyer received the Connie Basinger Award, named after a director and president from 2006 to 2018. Beyer was cited for her help with the AniMEALS program, the lobster sale and barbecue fundraiser, and financial stewardship.

Kevin Pruitt, vice president of the board of directors, gave Outstanding Volunteer Awards to South Rowan volunteers Eileen and Ed Hanson-Kelly and Ron Kirk; East Rowan, Debbie Eller and David and Anne Hoffman; West Rowan, John Sloan and David Walters; and Salisbury/North Rowan, Wallace Ward and Beverly Gobble.

A new board of directors was elected for 2020-21, including Mark Doby, Lauren Henson, Kevin Pruitt, Ron Rasile, Tara Smith, Tracy Smith and Charles Whaley.

President Tom Robinson highlighted the work of the board in implementing and revising policies. He thanked the community for supporting events that helped Meals on Wheels including a concert by Motel Soap, the firstArts Concert for Community Collaboration, the N.C. Artists Guild Art Show benefit, the Cheerwine Festival and Rockwell Faith Community Walk for Hunger.

Robinson said Meals on Wheels should be encouraged by the participation and support from the community for two new efforts this year. Fuzzy Buddies Fun Day and Fill Our Tubs for AniMEALS, sponsored by Hughes Plumbing, Kim Hardiman Designs, and Barnhardt Jewelers, collected donations of pet food for the pet companions of homebound seniors. September Sip, Sup and Shop, chaired by Teresa Casmus, raised almost $4,000, which is enough to support meals for two of participants for one year.

Robinson noted the number of donors has grown from 47 in 2016 to more than 1,000 in 2019.

Rob Miller’s treasurer’s report showed Meals on Wheels is ending the year in “the best financial shape that we have been in for the past six years.”

Nationally, the local program was selected as one of 19 agencies to participate in the More Than a Meal pilot project. He cited the work of Sandy Combs and Suzanne Weber in training and encouraging volunteers in the use of the Mobile Meals App on five test routes.

Samantha Dagenhart highlighted the Jean Anne Ferrier Ramsay Giving Circle and thanked those who have made a planned gift to Meals on Wheels Rowan including Anne and Frank Saunders, KC Ramsay, John Ramsay, George Ramsay, Dr. Norman Sloop, Johanna and Bruce Lovvorn, and Cindy Fink.