The Leavenworth County Council on Aging is again planning its largest annual fundraiser for what it calls its most important program.
The eighth annual Summer Benefit for the Meals on Wheels program is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. Friday in the gym at the Riverfront Community Center, 123 S. Esplanade St. in Leavenworth. Scarlet Ross of the council said the event, which features a fried chicken dinner, entertainment from Master of Ceremonies Dick Wilson of 94.9 KCMO oldies radio and silent and live auctions, will benefit the council's Meals on Wheels program, which is about 30 years old. Ross agreed that the program is a cornerstone of the Council on Aging's mission to keep seniors independent for as long as possible.
“When you have Meals on Wheels, that provides a nutritious meal,” she said. “When you have good nutrition, that's going to keep you independent and in your own home for longer.”
About 58 volunteers and a few staff members at the Council spend part of their day five days a week delivering more than 200 hot, nutritious meals to seniors across Leavenworth County.
Under the program, those who qualify ― which includes those who over 60 years of age who are unable to cook for themselves for medical reason and who have no one else to cook for them ― are also allocated a number of “shelf stable” meals for use during inclement weather or during holidays when hot meals are not delivered.
In addition to providing needed nutrition, Ross said Meals on Wheels also provides a regular visit and for those seniors who receive the service.
“This is main fundraiser for the Meals on Wheels,” Ross said, though the council does conduct some smaller benefits throughout the year.
She said though the Meals on Wheels program benefits seniors, the council's annual fundraiser for it is open to everyone. And the live and silent auctions will feature about 1,200 items, from antiques to toys to sports memorabilia and tickets to jewelry and handmade quilts, with the live portion led by auctioneer Bud Showalter.
“There's definitely something for all ages,” she said.
Tickets to the benefit cost $10 in advance or at the door for adults and $5 for those age 6 and younger. Tickets may be purchased in person from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Council, 1830 S. Broadway St. in Leavenworth. For more information, call 913-684-0777.