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Every day heroes

Once a month, East Dallas resident Dorothy Wilson finds herself standing on neighborhood doorsteps delivering hot meals with a smile.

She’s among a handful of neighborhood seniors involved in the Meals on Wheels program. The volunteers pick up prepared meals at the White Rock Senior Center, 9100 Diceman, and deliver them to homebound seniors.

“There’s not a lot of things where you can be a real hero every day,” says Gayle Collins, Dallas’ Meals on Wheels volunteer supervisor.

“But it’s real special for that person to get a meal.”

Wilson has been delivering meals for the program for the past 30 years, she says.
“It goes so far back, I don’t really remember when I started,” says Wilson, who coordinates the Meals on Wheels program for her church, Lakeside Baptist on Garland Road.

When Wilson first began volunteering, she had up to 30 homes on her delivery route. But as the years went by and more volunteers were recruited, her two-hour route has stabilized at about 20 homes, she says.

“I just feel like I’m meeting a need,” Wilson says. “I’m grateful I can volunteer and do various activities.”

Hollis Wise is 79 years old and he, too, has a monthly delivery route. Wise plans to continue the route “as long as I’m reasonably mobile.”
“I just feel good about it,” he says. “Most of them (meal recipients) are very appreciative. Occasionally they’re cranky, but that’s only when I’ve brought the food later than I should have.”

The White Rock Senior Center, located within the Lake View Christian Church, delivers 150 meals to homebound seniors on 10 daily delivery routes.

Each meal has 600-800 calories and is prepared for a homebound senior who lives alone, Collins says.

The program originally started during World War II in England. Meals were prepared and delivered to homes where the kitchens had been demolished from bombings, Collins says.
In 1958, the program was adapted for seniors and established in Dallas by the Women’s Council, Collins says.

Meals on Wheels is always looking for volunteers of all ages, especially during the summer when many senior volunteers refrain from delivering because of the heat, Collins says.

For information on becoming a volunteer, call 214-689-0639.

News & Notes

CLASSES

Shepherd Center Announces Classes: The Greater Lakewood Shepherd Center will offer its Spring Semester of “Adventures in Learning,” April 4-May 23, at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, 3204 Skillman. Registration cost is $17. For information, call Carolyn Dennis at 214-823-2583.

MEETINGS

Casa Linda AARP: The Casa Linda Chapter of the American Association of Retired Persons meets the first Monday of every month at the Family Life Center of the Casa Linda United Methodist Church, 1800 Barnes Bridge Road. All persons 50 and older are invited to attend. For information, call 214-361-7844.
Altschuler Speaks to AARP: The Ridgewood Park Chapter of the AARP welcomes philanthropist Ruth Sharp Altshuler, April 24 at 10 a.m. at the Ridgewood Park United Methodist Church, 6445 E. Lovers Lane. Lunch will be served at a cost of $1.50 each. For information, call Dorthea Sooby at 214-827-6678.

EVENTS

Informational Fair: Graduate students from the University of North Texas, in cooperation with C.C. Young, will host an informational fair for elderly individuals with poor vision or vision loss. The fair will be held April 13 in the B Building of CC Young, 4829 W. Lawther Drive, from 1:30-4:30 p.m. For information, call 214-827-8080.

Writer Blows Into Library: The Lakewood Branch of the Dallas Public Library, 6121 Worth, welcomes Dallas Morning News columnist Steve Blow on April 21 at 1:30 p.m. For information, call 214-670-1376.
The White Rock Senior Center: The White Rock Senior Center, 9100 Diceman, is holding several different activities for seniors throughout the month of April. The Love of Kids, which is an organization that helps needy children, is hosting a party for children and seniors on April 10 at the Anatole Hotel. Cost is $3 and reservations are required. Senior participants must meet at the senior center at 9 a.m. for transportation to the event, which includes dancing, entertainment and lunch. Participants will be returned to the center at 2 p.m. April 11 is “Movie Day” and the center will provide a free viewing of “The First Wives’ Club” at 9:45 a.m. On April 18, the center will be hosting their own Nutrition Jeopardy game at 11 a.m. and prizes will be awarded. A speaker from Eastfield College will discuss the college’s senior citizen programming on April 25 at 11 a.m. On May 9, the center is holding its largest function of the year at no cost to seniors. The annual event will be held at Fair Park and will have a carnival theme. Last year the event attracted 2,000 senior citizens and this year 3,000 are expected. The event runs 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and includes dancing, entertainment and lunch. Reservations are required. For information on any of the center’s events or to make reservations for activities call 214-328-4863.

HEALTH HAPPENINGS

A nurse Visit: The White Rock Senior Center, 9100 Diceman, invites several nurses from the City Health Department to visit the center the fourth Friday of each month. The nurses offer free blood pressure checks to seniors. Free physical exams are available if a reservation is made beforehand. The nurses will be at the center at 9 a.m. on April 25. To make reservations, call 214-328-4863.


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