Mother-son Meals on Wheels volunteer duo helping hundreds of homebound seniors every year

Posted at 2:13 PM, Mar 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-10 15:28:31-05

Rita Martin has been volunteering for Meals on Wheels South Florida for 14 years, dedicating her days to serving homebound seniors in Broward County.

“People who can’t get out, can’t go to the grocery store because they don’t have transportation, and they’re very appreciative of the boxes we give them,” said Rita.

Rita’s volunteer work in the community shined so bright- she won the Broward Senior Hall of Fame award in 2012.

“Some of these people do not have family to come and help them out,” said Rita.

Rita’s son, Paul, started volunteering with his mother two years ago.

“It’s something that allows me to spend time with my mom, helping her do what she loves doing, but also being able to contribute to the community and help seniors,” said Paul.

The dedication of the mother-son duo never stopped them from delivering meals during the pandemic.

“I know a lot of our volunteers who are older, decided that they needed to stay home of their safety and the safety of their clients, but Rita and Paul stuck with it the whole time,” said Mark Adler, executive director of Meals on Wheels South Florida.

Down 250 volunteers, Mark with Meals on Wheels, says they’re in dire need of help.

“Right now we have 250 active volunteers doing meal deliveries, and that’s down from where we were a year ago. We had almost 500,” said Mark.

The nonprofit provides food and resources to homebound seniors in South Florida. As a result, hundreds of seniors who are home alone have their days brightened everyday during what can be a difficult time.

“She’s my inspiration and seeing her give back to other people has inspired me in my life to give back and to be kind whenever I can,” said Paul.

“I could be one of those seniors. I’m 82 years old and I could be living by myself, so that’s what motivates me” said Rita.

Meals on Wheels South Florida is depending on donations and volunteers to stay afloat. If you’d like to support the nonprofits mission, click here.