Supporting the independence and well-being of San Diego seniors
In 1960, a group of United Methodist women invested their time and resources into researching the needs of San Diego’s elderly and meeting those needs. Funding was secured by the Georgia Lynch Trust Fund to begin the project, “Work With Senior Citizens.” These dynamic women implemented the program in three Methodist churches, providing a drop-in senior center and home visitation services, sponsored by volunteers and senior clubs. In 1967, the project was relocated to a storefront property to extend the services into the general community. A year later, “Work With Senior Citizens” became “Senior Adult Services,” and a Board of Trustees was formed.
In 1970, “Senior Adult Services” was incorporated as a non-profit corporation. Two years later, the “Meals-on-Wheels of Senior Adult Services” was initiated, offering special diet meals and contact by a concerned person five days a week. In 1996, “Senior Adult Services” officially became Meals-on-Wheels Greater San Diego, Inc. Meals-on-Wheels matured from an annual budget of $20,468 to over $3 million. Days of service increased to providing meals for seven days a week, 365 days a year, including holidays.
Meals on Wheels continued to grow. Areas of service grew larger and larger and reach extended to include over 3,049 square miles of San Diego county’s rural back country. Some smaller agencies were absorbed as well as partnerships initiated to prepare meals for other organizations to deliver. As part of the Affordable Care Act, alliances with healthcare providers were also created to deliver meals to newly discharged patients in an effort to prevent hospital bounce-backs. In July of 2016, Meals-on-Wheels Greater San Diego, Inc. became Meals on Wheels San Diego County to better reflect the depth and breadth of the expansive area of service.