WAXAHACHIE — Four chambers of commerces, three ribbons and two pairs of scissors helped welcome a vital aid for senior citizens to the Waxahachie and Ellis County communities. Although it was already operational in its new home, Tuesday marked the first "official" day for Meals on Wheels of Johnson and Ellis Counties to have a newly remolded and relocated office in the heart of Waxahachie.
“We did a joint ribbon cutting with Red Oak, Waxahachie, Midlothian, and Ennis Chambers of Commerce,” described Lisa Deese, Director of Communications Engagement for Meals on Wheels for Johnson and Ellis County. “Even throughout the rain, we had had a lot of community members, volunteers, donors, elected officials come and celebrate our new Ellis County location."
Serving meals for homebound elderly and disabled Johnson and Ellis County residents, Meals on Wheels has been a constant resource for both counties.
“We are the largest community supported organization in Ellis County, serving over 300 people daily, and we have at least 50 volunteers per day going out and delivering to every community in Ellis County,” Deese explained. “We’re talking Milford, Italy, Avalon, Red Oak, Ovilla, Ferris, Palmer - every community, we’re out there on the roads, and that just shows how strong the volunteer organization is."
With rapid growth from the past year, the nonprofit moved down the street to its new location on Ferris Avenue in late March.
“We were in the old building for over 15 years when we first started serving Ellis County,” Deese recalled. “Just in the last year, our numbers have grown so much, and we’re serving more people."
“And because of that, we needed more space for our employees and volunteers,” she added.
Through 11 routes just in Waxahachie, Meals on Wheels feeds hundreds of residents a week and is 100-percent based on community support.
“They have been a long time member of the chamber, and we appreciate what they do so much,” expressed Bonney Ramsey, Chair of the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce.
“Meals on Wheels is very big in Red Oak, and they’ve just opened up their fifth route,” articulated Shelley Martinez, President of the Red Oak Chamber of Commerce. “So it’s growing rapidly, and it’s needed in every community.”
After simultaneously cutting three ceremonial ribbons with two pairs of scissors, Deese encouraged the community to visit, get involved, and volunteer.
“There’s no way we could do it without our supporters and volunteers, and that’s the best thing of it all. They’re the heartbeat of our organization for sure,” Deese added.
To connect with Meals on Wheels Johnson and Ellis County, visit mowjec.org or call (972)-351-9943. The new facility can be found on 1311 Ferris Avenue, Suite C in Waxahachie.
Chelsea Groomer, @ChelseaGroomer