aby Susan Simons
LA VETA- La Veta has had a thriving Meals on Wheels program for the last three years, but it came to an end two weeks ago when the van they were using for deliveries was totaled.
The Meals on Wheels program in Huerfano and Las Animas Counties is administered by the Area Agency on Aging Nutrition Program of the South Central Council of Governments (COG). Two-thirds of the funding is federal and comes from Title III of the Older Americans Act. One-third comes from the Division of Aging and Adult Services of the Colorado Department of Human Services. The COG paid 75 cents for each meal delivered in La Veta.
The La Veta Meals on Wheels program worked this way. Volunteers drove to the community center in Walsenburg five days a week to pick up meals prepared for the Seniors Lunch Program there. They carried a soft hot pack and cold hard pack to pick up meals for seniors who qualified for the program. To qualify, persons are more or less homebound and unlikely to prepare hot meals for themselves. The program was delivering between 9 and 17 meals five days a week. The van for the La Veta deliveries was donated by San Isabel Electric Association.
During the week of October 17, as volunteer Marlene Moore was returning from Walsenburg with the meals, the van was struck on Highway 12 near the La Veta airport by another vehicle coming up the hill from La Veta. Both vehicles were totaled.
Marlene Moore suffered a broken sternum, broken ribs and a punctured lung. She is being treated at St. Mary Corwin Hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
However, Meals on Wheels has been discontinued in La Veta until another vehicle can be found to continue the program. The vehicle would have to be available in the middle of the day for several hours five days a week. It would be insured for this purpose by the individual who is currently most responsible for organizing the program in La Veta, Edna Schmidt of La Veta Senior Services, Mountain View Baptist Church.
To get more information, to become a volunteer, or to identify an available vehicle for Meals on Wheels in La Veta, contact Edna Schmidt at 719-742-3462.