Senior programs could be impacted by federal government budget cuts

Meals on Wheels often ends up on the chopping block in the federal budget, program leaders have said. "We are committed to continuing that mission regardless of challenges posed by potential cuts to federal funding". Not only does it provide access to proper and nutritious food, Meals on Wheels volunteers regularly check on seniors and help to bring assistance they need when they are sick and infirm.

"We need cuts. We know we need cuts". Due to their dedication and frugality over the years, along with the unbelievable support of our community, MOWEC has been able to serve clients continually for the last 22 years and we fully expect to continue services well into the future. While most public school dollars come from states and districts, federal funds cover specific programs.

"I knew I wasn't eating properly", says Eldracher.

Wright says, "Meals on Wheels, is an important program, its not just about a meal its about a social check on the seniors, to make sure they are okay". "That is the real risk, not the block grant cuts". The slash in funding would total almost $3 billion dollars from the Community Development Block Grant, established in 1974.

The target? Meals on Wheels. "Or that's money we just cut from our expenses and good is our number one expense".

Volunteer Kim Langdon has been packing and delivering meals two days a week for two years.

Senior CommUnity Meals' budget sits at about $500,000.

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Ajemian said that a majority of the federal funding for Meals on Wheels comes from The Older Americans Act and community donations.

Mulvaney clearly hasn't done his homework on the Meals on Wheels program. A 2013 study showed that spending on services like Meals on Wheels was associated with less reliance on institutionalized care, because more people could live independently.

That said, the Trump administration is trying to justify their massive cuts.

"All senior centers across the state do not operate exactly the same way", said Angela Ezell, senior center director.

"They give you a lot of respect", she said.

Seniors tell me they play pinochle and other games in addition to eating a hot meal.

In the 53-page budget summary, Trump said that the Federal Government has spent more than $150 billion on the program since its inception in 1974, but that it is "not well-targeted to the poorest populations" and has no demonstrated results. "It's like walking a tightrope right now".

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