Our mission is…
We are dedicated to providing quality nutrition services to enable seniors to remain healthy and independent in their own homes. This mission is accomplished through our 3 programs listed below.
Meals on Wheels (home-delivered meals): This service is targeted toward frail seniors who are homebound and unable to prepare balanced meals for themselves. Nutritious meals are delivered with a much-needed safety check. In 2016, 488,249 meals were provided to 2,562 homebound seniors.
Senior Pantry: Pantry services are targeted toward mobile seniors who are able to prepare meals for themselves. This service is operated in four locations throughout Kent County. Two of the locations are mobile. Seniors who are low income can shop twice per month for needed groceries. Our senior pantries distributed over 1 million pounds of food in 2016.
Congregate Dining Program: The dining program is targeted toward mobile seniors. This service provides not only a hot nutritious lunch, but also an opportunity to socially engage. There are 18 dining sites in Kent and Allegan County. More than 88,000 meals were served at our dining sites in 2016.
A little history…
Meals on Wheels Western Michigan was incorporated as a 501c(3) independent agency in 1984. Since founded, MOWWM has gone through a series of name changes. Having originally been known as Senior Meals Program, Inc., the organization rebranded in 2013 to Senior Meals on Wheels. As of May 25th, 2016, we are now known as Meals on Wheels Western Michigan, or MOWWM for short.
Our program was facilitated by Area Agency on Aging Western Michigan until Dolores Valentine was announced the first Executive Director. The first location of MOWWM was on Two Fountain Place in Grand Rapids. In 1992, MOWWM moved to Cedar Street, where we remained for 18 years until finally moving to our current location on Wilson Street in Grandville.
Over the years, many changes were made to MOWWM, largely to do with the growing need. In 1984, 975 seniors were being delivered meals to their home, in comparison to 2015 when more than 2,400 seniors received meals. Beginning in 1984, MOWWM only offered congregate (dining) meals and home-delivered meals. It was not until the year 2000 that pantry services were implemented. At the time, they were located off of Madison Avenue, until moving for additional space on Wealthy Street. Today, our main pantry is located in Grand Rapids off of Fuller Avenue.
MOWWM has been blessed to be supported by such an incredible base of volunteers and donors who share our passion for making a difference! We are able to efficiently serve the growing senior population thanks to donations, Kent County Senior Millage, Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan, Kent County, the City of Wyoming, and Heart of West Michigan United Way.