October 7, 2016
The work you are doing is crucial to the mission of CNNSSA. I repeat that mission because I think it is so important:
“Our mission is to provide meals and resources to older adults and persons with disabilities and assist them in leading active and healthy lives.”
The three most basic physical requirements for any human being to lead a happy and healthy life are food, shelter, and medical care. As a professor of Constitutional Law and of Civil Rights, I have long advocated that our courts should recognize these necessities of life as fundamental rights of every individual and that our law makers have a duty to ensure that every human being has access to sufficient food, shelter and medical care to ensure a productive life. We as a people have a long way to go in achieving that goal. But the Meals on Wheels program provides a model for caring for our most vulnerable citizens – the elderly and those with disabilities.
Our volunteers are crucial to the mission of CNNSSA. You not only deliver meals, you check on those who are confined in their homes and provide them with a friendly greeting that assures them that they have not been abandoned by society.
Our congregate facilities provide not only nourishment, but also provide an opportunity for seniors and persons with disabilities to get together as a community. Thus, you provide nourishment for the spirt as well as the body.
We could not exist as an organization without you. This past year CNNSSA provided 626,000 meals to over 6,000 seniors in Cook, Kendall, and Grundy Counties. All of this is accomplished without waiting lists. Our volunteers have donated 99,830 hours preparing, delivering, and visiting meal recipients. More than 30% of our elderly in Northern Illinois live at or below the poverty level. The challenge we face is huge, and the need continues to grow as more of our population ages. At the same time, we know that public money is becoming less available.
While we have our challenges, we can be proud of our accomplishments. Thank you, each and every one of you, for your contribution to this program. You are indeed doing God’s work.
With great appreciation,
Michael P. Seng
CNNSSA Board President