GENERAL Meals on Wheels of Northern Virginia, Inc. (MOW) relies on volunteers to staff its many functions. Its board of managers, its officers, its coordinators and its drivers are all volunteers. MOW's principal concern about continuing home-delivered meals to its clients is the availability of drivers to deliver food. The reliable staffing of the fifteen or so routes that operate about 22 days a month is essential to the continuing success of MOW. While volunteers are needed in a variety of roles, the need for drivers is MOW's most pressing need.
DRIVERS MOW's drivers use their personal vehicles to make deliveries to clients. Drivers come from a variety of sources. Some are associated with organizations such as churches, synagogues, clubs, companies, etc. Other individuals are without any organizational affiliation. Some drivers team with a partner thereby sharing responsibilities (driving, navigating the route and the actual delivery to the clients). Others volunteer by themselves. In every case, the volunteers deliver a route with about 10 to 12 clients once or more times a month. The drivers, on their assigned day, arrive at the First Presbyterian Church of Arlington (Ballston area) at about 11:00 AM. At the church, they are given written directions that detail the name, address and routing to the clients. They pick up containers that hold the food for their assigned route. When the containers are loaded into their vehicle, the drivers fan out on their assigned routes and make deliveries to the assigned clients. Upon completion of the route, the drivers return the empty containers to the church and turn in any payments they may have received from clients. It takes about an hour and one-half to deliver a route.
DRIVER TEAMS Is your family, social, civic, or religious group seeking to give more to the community? If so, consider forming a driver team of two people to deliver meals to homebound residents. Delivering meals is easy---most of the work is done for you---MOW furnishes the food and provides routing instructions. Who can volunteer? Anyone wishing to help---children and teens are excellent partners for an adult driver. And particularly important, delivering meals is rewarding---it provides nutritious food to clients allowing many recipients to live independently in their own homes rather than in an institution---moreover, it may constitute the clients only contact with the outside world for the day.
REQUIREMENTS MOW requires that drivers are licensed to operate a vehicle that is properly maintained, inspected and insured. Moreover, it is required that personnel occupying the front seat of a vehicle wear a seat belt.
SIGN ON To obtain more information about becoming a MOW driver, please phone 703-522-0811 or click HERE to initiate an e-mail message. In either case, MOW's Volunteer Coordinator will respond, answer your questions and indicate specific days and routes that need your services (since there are about fifteen routes and about 22 delivery days each month, the variety is great). A training session at the First Presbyterian Church will be arranged to introduce you to MOW and allow you to deliver a route with an experienced volunteer. Thereafter, you will be a valued MOW volunteer.