Perry Lutheran Homes Meals on Wheels program nearly doubles with addition of Dallas Center residents

Submitted to DCN
Nikki Danzer, Activity Director for Spring Valley Retirement Community, delivers meals to home-bound elders in area communities. PHOTOS COURTESY OF PERRY LUTHERAN HOMES

The Perry Lutheran Homes Meals on Wheels program has nearly doubled in clients and meals served as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Most of the growth has come from a large group of interested individuals in the community of Dallas Center.

After hearing about the Meals on Wheels program, volunteer delivery driver Bob King, approached Perry Lutheran Homes to see about serving clients in Dallas Center. When asked what prompted the request to bring Meals on Wheels to Dallas Center, King said, “Dallas Center has many aging residents who live by themselves in homes and apartments. As they have been avoiding shopping in stores to avoid COVID-19, we felt they needed reliable access to food.”

Before the service to Dallas Center could start, additional trays and supplies were needed to be able to serve nearly double the meals and to ensure both client and volunteers safety through extra COVID-19 precautionary measures.

“We talked through the logistics and it seemed like the right fit. Being able to serve others in their time of need is just who we are,” said Melissa Gannon, COO and Administrator for Perry Lutheran Homes. “So, Perry Lutheran Homes put in the order for additional trays and supplies, and Mr. King volunteered to make the deliveries to the clients in Dallas Center.”

Dietary staff at Perry Lutheran Homes Willis Campus make and serve nearly 1,750 meals per week for both residents receiving skilled or long-term care and for residents in their homes with Meals on Wheels.

When asked what Meals on Wheels recipients think of the program, King responded, “Recipients like the daily check-ins, even if we can only talk to them at their door step. If we don’t see or hear from them after knocking and placing their food at their door, we call to make sure they are well.”

Home-bound elders living in Perry, Dallas Center or northern Dallas County, can sign up for meal delivery from Perry Lutheran Homes Meals on Wheels by calling 515-465-7500 - Monday through Friday.

“During these deliveries, many times other needs are discovered. It might be a missing door, a dangerous handrail, or the lack of daily living supplies. We encourage the community to StepUp and look after our elders, not only during this COVID-19 pandemic, but far beyond. And, should you be helping an elderly neighbor, make sure to wear a mask and practice excellent hygiene and social distancing,” Gannon said.

Perry Lutheran Homes is in continued need of volunteers to deliver meals and funding to support the care of elders. There are three easy ways to make a donation. Text the word “GIVE” to the number 515-320-8256. Donate online at Or, mail a check to Perry Lutheran Homes, 2323 Willis Ave, Perry, IA 50220.

To learn more about Perry Lutheran Homes Meals on Wheels, visit