“Meals on Wheels” (MOW) is a catch line for identifying a social program that has been serving senior citizens for many years. Many of our readers have benefited from the program, which is offered in most counties across the United States. Scores of our readers have heard about the program from their parents and grandparents.

We were attracted to a recent story on our “Boomers & Beyond” page, which was devoted to a nutrition program offered to seniors in Marinette County. The story was written by Avery Steen, nutrition coordinator for Elderly Services of Marinette County, a private, nonprofit organization and operates as a County Aging Unit, which has been providing services to the aging and disabled individuals since 1975. It’s hard to realize the program has been providing such a wonderful service for more than 40 years.

According to Steen, Elderly Services of Marinette County has been on a mission of long-term care services through community-based services, including but not limited to the local Alzheimer’s/Caregiver Support programs, Elderly Benefit Specialist Program, information and assistance, nutrition programs, transportation services, and Wellness Training and Education. These combined programs cover a broad segment of elderly services in Marinette County.

While all of these services are valuable and appreciated by our large population of seniors, the Meals on Wheels program seems to be the signature slice of all offerings. Last year, the nutrition program provided 50,000 meals to elderly folks age 60 and older in Marinette County. Of the total served, 34,000 of them were home-delivered meals. The MOW program provides meals to approximately 376 homebound older persons annually.

One of the most telling points of the program is that it helps older citizens maintain independence and remain in their homes — or place of residence — with dignity.

There are many other benefits that are packaged in the programs for the county’s elderly population. While the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has been a burdensome addition for all age groups in our county, think of the challenges placed in front of the people charged with the responsibility of serving senior citizens. They deserve our praise.