COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — LIFECARE Alliance’s Meals on Wheels program delivered Christmas dinner to thousands of families across central Ohio Sunday.

Their work doesn’t stop there. The organization is in need of volunteers for this final week of 2022, especially after the winter weather stopped them from delivering.

Chuck Gehring, the President and CEO of LIFECARE Alliance, said this weekend was only the second and third time in a decade they could not deliver meals in Franklin County due to weather, making the need even greater than it already was.

He said Christmas day is always busy for Meals on Wheels and is only the beginning of a packed week. “We have not been able to deliver because of the temperatures. Most of our volunteers just can’t go out on this kind of day or anyone can’t go out on this kind of day. So, we are going to have to make all this stuff up in the next few days,” Gehring said.

In order to meet that demand, he said they are in desperate need of volunteers. “While we have tons of them, we need more because we are just desperate to get meals out and get caught up from these days of snow and horrible temperatures. So, if you want to volunteer for us, it’s not too late,” Gehring said.

Organization leaders say something like this has never happened to them before Christmas – especially when the demand is so high. The organization says they are delivering 70 percent more meals than they were pre covid. Gehring said many of the people they are delivering to are living off a less than $1,500 income.

So, in the spirit of giving, they’re asking for the community’s help. “We are hopeful to be going to our outer counties other than Franklin which are Madison to the west and then Champaign, Logan and Marion,” Gehring said. “We need your help, and we are going to need it throughout this next week very desperately and we are going to need it all through the winter frankly because we lose some of our drivers and some of our older volunteers.”

On Christmas day, meals on wheels delivered around 3,000 meals. The rest of the week they’ll be delivering around 7,000 meals daily.

Information on how to volunteer can be found on the LIFECARE Alliance’s website or you can call 614-444-MEAL (6325).