Like all of us, the people Rauch serves have an array of interests, abilities, goals, and dreams. Staff members like Peggy Pinaire spend their days helping these individuals on their journey of expanding those abilities, enjoying these interests, and achieving their goals and dreams. Along this path, however, Peggy often finds that our clients give back just as much as they receive.
Peggy has been at Rauch for nearly six years, and has spent Wednesdays with Michelle for two of those years. The pair quietly starts their day at the New Albany Library before heading up the street to Riverview Towers to prepare for a literal journey around town. At Riverview, staff from LifeSpan Resources provides them with enough food to feed fifteen hungry people… and then they’re off!
Michelle and Peggy traverse the streets of New Albany in Peggy’s small car, listening to the radio and chatting. This is more than a joy ride, though. The meals they received at Riverview are a lifeline for the homebound and the elderly, and Michelle and Peggy deliver them with cheer and love. Along the way, Peggy helps Michelle learn each recipient’s name and greet them accordingly. Michelle, a 10-year Meals on Wheels veteran, doesn’t need any help with the hospitality part of the equation.
Ann is thrilled to see them arrive, and responds with a warm greeting. Michelle and Peggy have visited her home each week for a year, and Ann exclaims three words that demonstrate their impact – “I love Michelle!” After some brief chatting, the delivering duo is back to their mission.
Mary is as thrilled to see Peggy and Michelle as Ann was. She’s known Michelle and her family since Michelle was a young girl. In fact, she says that she considers both delivery ladies to be her family. Michelle was initially apprehensive about Mary’s beautiful cats. Now, however, she gladly gives them a loving pat before returning to the car.
Kent has difficulty getting around, and doesn’t see well anymore. When delivering his meal, Michelle and Peggy perform another important service by bringing in his mail. And then there’s Amy, who greets the two with the enthusiasm of a doting grandmother, bestowing huge, hugs upon their arrival. There is little doubt that Michelle and Peggy are a very bright and beloved spot in both Kent and Amy’s Wednesdays.
After this journey is complete, Peggy and Michelle take a little time for themselves. Munching on a salad at a local restaurant, they have the satisfaction of knowing that their friends are enjoying a healthy meal, too – and that they helped make that happen.
LifeSpan Resources always needs more Meals on Wheels delivery drivers.
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Janet Manzo at (812) 948-8330.
*please note - names of Meals on Wheels recipients have been changed to protect their privacy.