MASON COUNTY — Over 75 boxes of food were distributed to senior citizens across Mason County last week through a new program by the Department of Agriculture and the Facing Hunger Foodbank.
The food was distributed at the Mason County libraries in Point Pleasant, Mason, and New Haven to qualifying seniors who had previously filled out applications.
The goal of the program is to improve the health of those who are 60 years and over by adding nutritious foods to their diets free of charge. Each box includes approximately 35 pounds of food.
Among the items contained in this month’s boxes were bran flakes, oats, apple juice, beef stew, chili, canned meat, peanut butter, pasta, cheese, instant potatoes, canned vegetables, and fruit. The selection will vary monthly.
Approved seniors need only to drive to the library they choose on their application, and a library worker or volunteer will carry the box to the vehicle. This month’s volunteers were Lou Thompson at the Point Pleasant library, and OVP Health Operations Manager and Mason Mayor Kristopher Clark at the Mason location.
The Robert and Louise Claflin Foundation provided grant money for a storage building at the library in Point Pleasant. The building is used to store the food from the time it is delivered to Mason County until it is distributed to participants.
Applications are still being accepted and can be filled out during regular library hours. Guidelines are based on a gross monthly income of $1,473 or below for one person; $1,984 for two; $2,495 for three; $3,007 for four; $3,518 for five; $4,029 for six; $4,541 for seven; $5,052 for eight; and over eight people, add $492 for each.
The next distribution will be on June 16 from 2 to 4 p.m. A proxy can be designated by the senior if they desire another person to pick up their food. If a food box is missed for two months, the senior will be removed from the program list.
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Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at [email protected]