Local Partnership Brings Heart and Health to ROSSS’ Meals on Wheels.

By Melissa MacIsaac, ROSSS

Rural Ottawa South Support Services (ROSSS) is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for seniors and adults with disabilities. Our Meals on Wheels program, a cornerstone of our services, ensures that older individuals and adults with disabilities in our rural communities have access to nourishing food, delivered right to their doorstep by our dedicated volunteers.

To deliver these nutritious meals, ROSSS has a partnership with TimeSaver Foods and Manotick Place. Timesaver foods provides the frozen meals ROSSS offers through our Meals on Wheels program, while Manotick Place provides the fresh meals. Our fresh and frozen meals are delivered Monday through Friday, frozen meals can also be picked up at our office at 1096 Bridge Street in Manotick.

As we wrap up our March for Meals awareness campaign, we wanted to take a moment to highlight the partnerships we have with our Meals on Wheels providers, specifically our Frozen Meal’s provider: TimeSaver Foods. This long-standing relationship has grown and enhanced our Meals on Wheels program over the years. Additionally, our frozen meals program is the lesser known of our Meals on Wheels program, but can be a convenient option for those are not available daily to receive the delicious fresh meal deliveries.

TimeSaver Foods is a local, family-run business and they share ROSSS’s commitment to fostering well-being and connection among community members. This long-standing partnership symbolizes the coming together of two entities deeply rooted in the community, driven by a shared mission of caring for its members. In a recent conversation with Peter, owner of TimeSaver Foods, he shared that he and his wife started in a tiny kitchen in the CTV building back in 1999. I asked him what it means to him and his family to be able to support rural seniors and adults with disabilities in this way, he said ‘it’s a wonderful, heartfelt feeling knowing that we are providing this needed service to the community…” , noting that he especially appreciates knowing they’re able to serve seniors and veterans and those being discharged from hospitals.

At the heart of these collaborations, lies the emphasis on home-cooked meals, prepared with love and care by TimeSaver Foods and Manotick Place. Unlike mass-produced frozen meals, these offerings are crafted with meticulous attention to quality and taste, ensuring that recipients not only receive sustenance but also experience the comforting flavors reminiscent of homemade cooking. TimeSavers indicated that most popular meals are the turkey and roast beef dinners, shepherds pie and meatloaf! This home cooked meal aspect adds a personal touch to the Meals on Wheels service, fostering a sense of warmth and familiarity for recipients who may otherwise feel isolated or alone.

When asked why TimeSavers Foods values the partnership with ROSSS, Peter mentioned that the ROSSS staff have been incredibly supportive over the years, specifically highlighting that Cathy, our Coordinator of Food Security Programs, is a ROCK STAR!

Our Meals on Wheels program demonstrates the critical importance of nutritious meals in promoting health and well-being, particularly among vulnerable populations. Home-cooked meals prepared with fresh ingredients offer a wealth of nutritional benefits that contribute to overall health and vitality. For many recipients of Meals on Wheels, these meals serve as a lifeline, providing essential nutrients that support their physical and mental well-being.

These partnerships allow ROSSS to deliver meals that not only meet the nutritional needs of recipients but also cater to their diverse tastes and dietary needs. From hearty stews to flavorful casseroles, each meal is thoughtfully crafted to provide both sustenance and satisfaction, ensuring that recipients look forward to each delivery.

In addition to nourishing the body, these meals also nourish the soul, fostering a sense of connection and care within the community. For many recipients, the Meals on Wheels program serves as more than just a meal delivery service; it is a social connection opportunity that offers companionship and support with our incredible volunteers. The familiar face of the delivery volunteer, coupled with the comforting aroma of a freshly prepared meal, brings a sense of joy and reassurance to those who may be experiencing loneliness or isolation.

ROSSS’ Meals on Wheels program is an excellent example of the power of community collaboration in creating positive change. Through the shared dedication to caring for the most vulnerable members of society, all parties involved demonstrate that true impact begins with acts of kindness and compassion, woven together by the threads of community support.