Senior Services of Southwest Michigan is proud to announce that it has received a $5000 Meals on Wheels Loves Pets grant through Meals on Wheels America, for its pet support program, Pet Food Bank. Funding will be used to provide food and supplies for the pets of Meals on Wheels clients, which can often be a financial and physical challenge for older adults to manage on their own.
“We know that with aging comes loneliness and isolation, and that our seniors count on their furry friends to keep them company. We also understand that fixed incomes are difficult, so sometimes feeding that furry friend can be difficult,” says Marketing and Communications Manager, Susan Terranella. “That’s why we feel so fortunate to receive this grant and keep our seniors with the pets they consider family. Our Pet Food Bank is stocked and ready to share love with our clients!”
Funding for this grant was made possible through a partnership with PetSmart Charities, part of Meals on Wheels America’s strategic effort to combat social isolation and loneliness among seniors across the country. This year, PetSmart Charities’ support allowed Meals on Wheels America to grant $354,500 to 98 Meals on Wheels programs through the Meals on Wheels Loves Pets initiative, which ensures that homebound seniors and their animal companions can live happy, healthy lives together.
“The companionship a pet offers enhances the physical and mental health and well-being of homebound seniors, which is particularly valuable as so many older adults are feeling even more lonely and isolated amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Meals on Wheels America President and CEO Ellie Hollander. “We’re grateful for PetSmart Charities’ ongoing support, which has allowed us to invest Meals on Wheels Loves Pets grants in more local Meals on Wheels programs than ever before. This support will enable Senior Services to provide pet supplies and care to local seniors, making it more feasible for seniors to remain safe and healthy at home with their beloved companions during this public health emergency and beyond.”
Seniors age 55 and older in Kalamazoo and Calhoun counties are eligible for support. To make a request for supplies, seniors are asked to call Senior Services at 269-382-0515.