AniMeals - Meals on Wheels for Pets
As the Meals on Wheels volunteer driver walks up the steps with a hot meal and a bag of pet food she sees the cute, fluffy face of a dog in the front window staring at her with big brown eyes. She can tell that he is wagging his tail by the way the curtain is moving from side to side. The appreciation this volunteer feels from both the homebound senior and his dog when she is invited in brings tears to her eyes. After delivering the meals and making sure her homebound friend is safe and comfortable, the driver heads towards her car, turning around to witness her friend smiling and waving at the window with the pup right by his side.
Spectrum Generations Cohen Community Center delivers five nutritional Meals on Wheels per week to disabled and elderly homebound adults in Kennebec County, and also provides food for up to 45 dogs and cats, delivering 135 lbs of pet food each week. Not only are the nutritional needs met for the Meals on Wheels recipient, but also for their well-loved pet too!
The AniMeals program began about 10 years ago after learning that some seniors did not have enough money to feed their pets and were sharing their Meals on Wheels. Immediate action was taken. Through the support of local veterinarians and many kind community residents, the AniMeals program blossomed. The Pine Tree Veterinarian Hospital and their customers have been donating pet food every month for years, and Willow Run Bed, Biscuit & Bath, Tractor Supply and many area churches and organizations are always willing to donate when the coffers get low.
Spectrum Generations also relies on grants such as the ongoing support it has received from the Banfield Charitable Trust. The Cohen Center recently received a $1,500 Banfield grant to be used towards the purchase of pet food. “With help from Banfield, local businesses and individuals, the AniMeals program continues to thrive – which in turn helps keep these cherished pets home in the loving arms of our homebound seniors!” states Lynda Johnson, Nutrition Coordinator
If you would like to donate unopened dry cat and dog food, make a financial donation or become a volunteer, contact Lynda Johnson at 626-7777 or by email at [email protected].