McCarty Senior Center serves up compassion through pandemic
The McCarty Senior Center was established in 1999 to help people in Wheatland get the help they needed when times got tough, thanks to a generous contribution from Ward McCarty to the senior citizens of Hickory County.
Donnita Stanley has been with the organization for 13 years.
“Being a part of such a community and organization has been an important lifeline for me, and it is a pleasure to continue the work we do here,” she shared.
The owners of the McCarty Building, Hickory County Senior Citizen’s Inc., have been members of Ozarks Food Harvest for at least 25 years. The organization currently receives food deliveries two times each month.
“With the contributions from The Food Bank, we are able to offer variety with our meals, and the items we receive benefit many,” Donnita said.
Care Connection offers many programs and activities at the McCarty Center for adults 60 years and older. Some of these services include public information, educational services, nutrition assistance, care management, in-home services and many recreational options such as bingo, pool, bridge and dances.
Donnita says that the most important program offered at the center is nutrition, which consists of home-delivered and on-site meals.
Prior to the pandemic, the center served about 78 on-site congregate meals every day, with 400 different participants coming in throughout the year for a nutritious meal and much-needed socializing.
In mid-March, the center began a curbside option for the many seniors who relied on the program to meet their nutritional needs.
“We currently have 126 registered for this service as well as a telephone reassurance system set in place to check on these participants. As we still encourage our vulnerable members to shelter in, the curbside program also allows for a trip out into the community to help break up their day at home,” Donnita said.
The home-delivered meal program has continued without interruption with added safety precautions, serving 75 vulnerable homebound older adults. This service offers hot and frozen meal delivery three times a week to aid in the clients’ nutrition while they live independently in their homes. This program is especially important because many of these clients are unable to leave their homes and have very little outside interaction.
The program allows volunteer delivery drivers to interact with the clients and exchange a few kind words with every food dropoff.
“Every day, we are reminded of the importance of the work we do, receiving many thanks and words of encouragement from those who express their gratitude for the work we are doing, especially during these trying times,” Donnita said. “It is with great energy, passion, and commitment from our volunteers together with our devoted staff, that we achieve our goals in serving Hickory County’s magnificent older adults, even through this pandemic.”
We’re so thankful for the awesome staff and volunteers at the McCarty Center! Click here to learn more about the facility.