Fifty years ago in March of 1972, the United States Congress added senior nutrition programs to the Older Americans Act. Because of this important action, generations of seniors who otherwise may have gone hungry have received nutritious meals. The program allowed for the creation of congregate meal settings to serve as a hub for older adults to access nutritious meals and other vital services created to strengthen social connections and promote health and wellbeing. For seniors who are unable to leave their homes, home-delivered meals are delivered directly to their door.
A survey conducted in 2020 found:
- The majority of seniors who receive congregate meals rely on the program for at least half of their total food intake each day.
- Eighty percent of participants said the program improves their overall health.
- Seventy percent reported that the program helps them live independently.
Other benefits of senior nutrition programs include reduced risk of falling and sustaining injuries at home, as well as better overall health outcomes for seniors.
Between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021, LifeStream provided over 300,000 meals to seniors living in Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne counties. Within this 12 county service area, LifeStream hosts 23 congregate and curbside meal sites. The sites provide nutritious meals to older adults who are 60 years of age and over and their spouse. Meals are provided on a donation basis and those under the age of 60 can enjoy meals for a small fee.
Throughout the month of March, LifeStream will be joining senior nutrition programs throughout the United States in celebrating the 50 year anniversary in alignment with National Nutrition Month which is also in March. LifeStream will be visiting sites and distributing goodies to participants throughout the month to celebrate. Follow along on Facebook and Instagram as we share information on the senior nutrition program, nutrition tips, and fun recipes to try at home.
Those who are interested in participating in LifeStream’s nutrition programs should call 800-589-1121 or visit lifestreaminc.org/nutrition to discover the best option for you.