Midleton Meals on Wheels officially opened its newly refurbished premises at the Parish Hall on Youghal Road, Midleton, on Tuesday, 28 February.
The newly refurbished facilities in Father Murphy Hall were officially opened by Joe McCarthy of Midleton District Council with Father O’Donovan giving the official blessing.
“We had a huge attendance,” said John Rose, Chairman of the Midleton Meals on Wheels committee. “We had a lot of current and retired volunteers there as well as supports. They all got to tour the new premises. It was a very enjoyable night.”
Midleton Meals on Wheels raised over €40,000 in the last six months to completely redo the kitchen and dining room to bring facilities up to modern standards. The previous upgrade was completed 25 years ago.
“Meals on Wheels operate out of the Parish Hall,” said Mr Rose. “The last upgrade was about 25 years ago. We had to upgrade to get in line with current health and safety standards and food handling practices. The decision was made last July to embark on these refurbishments. The full 11-strong committee here are very grateful to the Midleton Town Council, the HSE and the business and people of Midleton and East Cork for helping us in this endeavour. We would like to say thanks to John Horgan of the Parish Hall committee for his tremendous help and for donating funds”.
The Midleton branch of Meals on Wheels was set up in 1972 and is currently manned by over 70 volunteers who donate their time and services for free. Every year the voluntary service prepares and delivers 10,000+ freshly cooked hot meals to people who are of limited means or ability to cook for themselves. The service delivers to the Midleton and surrounding areas on Wednesdays and Saturdays and sources all supplies from local suppliers.
The upgrades to the kitchen included new windows, redone plumbing and wiring and upgrades to the fabric of the walls and floors. The dining room also received an overhaul with a new addition of a photo gallery of past members and supports who have worked with the group since its beginnings.
“It is very important to us to acknowledge all the members and volunteers who worked with us since 1972,” said Mr Rose.
Midleton Meals on Wheels also provides contact with people who live alone and may not have any visitors while also promoting the welfare of the elderly and people in need with the group also holding a Christmas event every January.
Midleton Meals on Wheels subsists on fundraising and donations by the people of Midleton and East Cork and runs several fundraising events throughout the year to help fund the service.