A total of 18,764 free frozen meals were distributed to Crow Wing County seniors age 60 and older in 2021 by the Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Saint Cloud Senior Dining Program.
Beginning in March, the health and nutritious meals were offered in Crosby. Since April, they have been distributed the third Monday of the month at the Deerwood Auditorium, except for the month of October. The program is continuing the first two months of 2022.
There are no income guidelines for eligibility, however, an annual registration form must be completed at the distribution. Catholic Charities serves and enhances human dignity for people of all faiths and beliefs. No one is denied a meal based upon their ability to contribute.
During this drive-through, no-contact distribution, volunteers provide seniors with pre-packaged boxes of 10 frozen meals and sometimes bags of other fresh food. Each senior may receive up to 30 meals in a month. The meals are healthy and nutritious and meet one third of the recommended daily dietary allowance for seniors. They are packaged in microwave and oven safe containers and are easy to heat and eat. Meals are not diet specific but are prepared with no salt.
There is no fee for the meals; however, contributions are accepted. To make a donation, go to www.ccstcloud.org and click at the top of the screen ONLINE BILL PAY, choose SENIOR DINING for the Service/Program and complete. To contribute using a credit card, call 320-229-4584. Any contributions received are private and confidential.
The program is partially funded under a contract with the Central Minnesota Council on Aging as part of the Older Americans Act and administered by Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Saint Cloud. For more information, contact CRMC Social Worker Kari Lee Pietz at 218-545-5361.