Some 450 Perry-area senior citizens received a special delivery of love Thursday in the third Perry Lutheran Homes Deliver the LOVE outreach event.
“The community response is just overwhelming,” said the Perry Lutheran Homes Marketing Director Mollie Clark. The Deliver the LOVE event, a successor to annual Meals from the Heartland, has steadily grown since 2021. This year’s secondary goal was raising funds to keep the home-delivered meals program for older adults in northern Dallas County going.
Starting at 9 a.m., some 20 volunteers, called #DifferenceMakers, gathered at Perry Lutheran Homes Eden Acres Campus to pack baskets with fresh fruit, puzzle books, snacks, devotionals and then set off to deliver the “love” to older adults living in their homes. A fresh crew of 18 to 20 #DifferenceMakers arrived every hour on the hour until 3 p.m., delivering within a 10-mile radius of Perry.
Through the efforts of area churches and community partners, most basket items are donated, leaving funds raised to support delivering meals and love every weekday throughout the year to home-bound older adults in Perry, Adel, Minburn, Dallas Center, Granger and Woodward in the Meals on Wheels program.
By the end of the day, some than 300 seniors received love baskets in their homes, and another 150 residents of Perry’s senior communities received baskets as well.
“We are very grateful to all our generous donors and volunteers,” said the Perry Lutheran Homes Fund Development Director Lynette Groenenboom. She said the Perry Lutheran Homes Meals on Wheels program, serving 20,000 meals annually to older adults living in Perry, Adel, Minburn, Dallas Center, Granger and Woodward, also delivers the love year-round.
“The costs to prepare, cook, transport and deliver over 20,000 meals each year far exceeds available funding, leaving a sizable program deficit of over $100,000,” Groenenboom said. “This program is not sustainable unless organizations, businesses, communities and individuals step up to financially support this life-saving service.”