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Volunteers bring food and check in on neighbors ahead of possible blizzard

Posted at 6:24 PM, Dec 22, 2022

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. — Volunteers with Meals on Wheels of Sheboygan County moved quickly on Thursday morning to get food to neighbors' homes before a possible blizzard.

Gerry and Marie Henning have been volunteering with the non-profit for more than a decade.

"When you see the smile on some of these people's faces, it's worth it. It does as much for us as what it does for them I'm sure," Gerry said.

With the strong possibility of a blizzard looming, their dedication to helping others is critical.

"Making a decision whether or not to close, it's very hard. We just knew that going into a holiday weekend, we need to deliver as much food as we could, making sure everybody's going to be safe over the holidays," said CEO Allison Thompson.

Thompson explained that their decision to stay open or to close is tough for two reasons. They have to consider if staff can safely come in by 6:30 a.m. and if volunteers can be on the roads and handle the physical demands of delivering meals.

The non-profit has 60 volunteers in addition to its staff. It puts out 8,000 meals a month, according to Thompson.

Due to the storm's potential impact, Thompson said they made sure to get extra food to their homebound clients.

However, their work includes more than providing a meal.

"The important part, in addition to the meal, is that visit from a live person saying, 'How are you today? Are you doing okay?' They notice if there's an odor in the air, that's gas. They notice if the heat is not working," Thompson said.

"They really are angels," client Claudia Bricks said.

Bricks spent her career as a teacher. She is now one of the 370 people this non-profit feeds every week.

"Mmm this looks like some kind of cranberry," Bricks said.

While battling health issues, it is tough for Bricks to get around and even just to use her hands and the cold makes it harder.

For her, this non-profit has been a blessing.

"They're all fabulous people and they care about others, which I think we need a whole lot more of these days."

If you would like to volunteer or make a donation visit Fresh Meals On Wheels' website.

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