FAQ about Meals on Wheels

What is Meals on Wheels?

Lakewood Meals on Wheels is a nonprofit, volunteer-based organization dedicated to providing nourishing food to homebound residents living in Lakewood, California and portions of Long Beach and Hawaiian Gardens.

Each recipient receives a hot meal for lunch and a sack meal for dinner delivered to their home by a friendly volunteer.

What type of meals are served?

Each meal consists of a hot lunch and a "cold" sack dinner for the evening meal. The hot meal consists of a protein, a vegetable, and a starch. The cold meal consists of a sandwich, salad, fruit, and dessert. A carton of milk and either small carton of juice or soup are also provided daily. If you are interested in what we serve, click here to see a sample menu(PDF, 267KB)

What if I am diabetic or have other dietary restrictions?

We do not offer specialized diets, however fresh fruit, plain yogurt, or other unsweetened items are substituted for those requiring non-sugar diets. All meals are low sodium and low cholesterol.

When are the meals delivered?

Meals are delivered to clients' homes by volunteers between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., Monday through Friday. Someone must be home to accept delivery, or an insulated MOW bag (available for purchase from the Lakewood Meals on Wheels office) must be left out on the porch.

Meals are not delivered on Saturdays, Sundays, and some holidays. Frozen meals are available upon request. They are delivered on the day before the designated holiday or on Friday for the weekend.

What does it cost?

Clients are charged $9.00 per day and are billed once per month. Initial minimum service is for two weeks, payable in advance, and is non-refundable. There are subsidies available for clients in need of financial assistance.

Why do we do it?

Meals on Wheels services help many residents be able to age in place in their homes.  Many clients are homebound due to illness, age, or disability and the volunteer delivering meals is often the only friendly, caring face they see all day. The daily nutritional meal is important, but daily contact with a caring volunteer is almost as important.  If a client is ill or hurt, or if the volunteer is unable to get a response at the door, help is immediately called.  In addition to delivering meals, Meals on Wheels works together with other agencies to help maintain the dignity of life and privacy of the homebound in our community so that they may remain in their own homes as long as possible.

How do I volunteer?

Volunteers help in a variety of ways. You can help us by simply volunteering daily, weekly, monthly or on a substitute basis.  Here are some of the volunteer opportunities available:

  • Preparers make sandwiches and package meals for delivery in the Meals on Wheels kitchen.
  • Drivers use their vehicles to deliver meals to clients' homes in and around Lakewood. Routing directions are provided and are easy to follow. Mileage reimbursement is available for volunteers driving home delivered routes.
  • Visitors accompany the drivers and deliver the meals directly to the clients.

Does the City of Lakewood help Meals on Wheels?

Yes, the City of Lakewood is a valuable partner. Lakewood Meals on Wheels is a non-profit organization, however the city provides a variety of in-kind services to Meals on Wheels including office space at the Burns Community Center, mileage reimbursement for volunteer drivers and meal subsidy for low-income recipients through the Community Development Block Grant program. This limited funding is applied for and granted annually as funds become available. 

Does Meals on Wheels need donations?

Financial assistance is greatly needed for the program’s daily operation. Lakewood Meals on Wheels is a non-profit, community agency sponsored by many private contributors. Contributions are tax deductible.  Contributions can be made online at www.lakewoodcity.org/DonateMOW or by mail. Make checks payable to Lakewood Meals on Wheels, c/o Burns Community Center, 5510 Clark Ave., Lakewood, CA 90712.  

Go here to find out about our annual sustaining membership program, The Good Neighbor Sponsorship program.

How do I start the service or receive more information?

To begin receiving meals, or for more information, call us at (562) 925-8747. 24 hours notice is usually required to begin the service.