J Meals Houston Helps Launch National Meals on Wheels Campaign
J Meals volunteer, Kate Daniel, was chosen by the Ad Council to help launch a national campaign in Washington D.C. this summer. Right out of the University of Houston, 23 year old Kate came to Evelyn Rubenstein JCC as an intern with J Meals and quickly moved into a part time staff position. Her enthusiasm and passion for volunteer work landed her in the national spotlight, but the bigger payoff is how she is serving more than her community now. She is helping to spread the word about the need for more volunteers to serve the nation's elderly. Here is Kate talking about the experience in her own words.
I have spent the past year as a volunteer for J Meals, and informally have acted as an advocate for meal on wheel volunteerism in that time. Recently, I had the opportunity to put my enthusiasm to use as a Meals on Wheels volunteer representative for Meals on Wheels of America. I hopped on a plane to Washington DC to participate in a full day of interviews to air across the country as Meals on Wheels launched its first national campaign, "Let's do Lunch!" in partnership with the Ad Council.
It was an honor to work alongside CEO, Ellie Hollander, the Meals on Wheels communications team, and the PSA pros at Ad Council. Because of them, my time in an unfamiliar city doing unfamiliar things felt surprisingly comfortable. It was evident that everyone involved truly believed in the capacity of Meals on Wheels to impact lives, as I've been able to witness daily in my time as a volunteer.
I love talking with the clients. Sometimes its just, "how is your day going?" Other times it’s a longer conversation about what is going on in their lives. It is not always the clients who have that emotional need to connect, sometimes its their companions or family members. I have found that the seniors who rely on Meals on Wheels don't only have a nutritional need but an emotional need as well. I feel like I’m making a difference and I’m not even using a lot of energy to do it. It just takes one hour a day.