2010 Search for the Greatest Meals On Wheels Volunteer!

2010 Search for the Greatest Meals On Wheels Volunteer! 116 extraordinary Meals On Wheels volunteers from across the country begin competing tomorrow to become the 2010 American Volunteer. This is the second annual American Volunteer contest organized by the Meals On Wheels Association of America (MOWAA). This year, the nominees span in ages from four to 95 and come from all walks of life. They include a volunteer who is deaf and another who is a member of the Air Force Band of Liberty. These are Meals On Wheels volunteers who go above and beyond to make sure homebound seniors in their community have the nutritious food and human contact they need to survive.

To view video entries of each of the 16 contestants, go to www.mowaa.org/avpreview where you can also see which Meals On Wheels program the volunteers belong to.  Starting tomorrow, the public can watch and vote for their favorite volunteer at www.mowaa.org/americanvolunteer.

Bridgestone Retail Operations (BRSO) – a corporate supporter of MOWAA – is the sponsor of this year’s competition. The first-place winner of the American Volunteer contest will receive MOWAA’s annual Jody Tepedino Nicholo Award and his or her nominating MOW program will be presented a check for $1,000, second place will be presented a check for $750, and third place will be presented with a check for $500 at the 2010 Annual MOWAA Conference in Atlanta, Ga., on September 2nd. In addition, BSRO has generously offered to throw in a new set of tires for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners.

“This competition recognizes everyday citizens who become heroes by helping to make sure no senior goes hungry,” said MOWAA President and CEO Enid Borden. “These are Meals On Wheels volunteers who provide a lifeline for America’s hungry, homebound and forgotten seniors. They are the backbone of America’s Meals On Wheels programs.”

A virtual army of volunteers give their time to help prepare and deliver Meals On Wheels. It is estimated that this group, numbering between 800,000 and 1.2 million individuals, is the largest group of volunteers in the nation.

Voting for the American Volunteer contest begins tomorrow, June 15th and runs until August 1st. More than 10,000 people cast their vote for the 2009 American Volunteer. 97-year-old Lucille Blackburn, who volunteers for Meals For The Elderly in San Angelo, Texas, won last year’s contest. Starting in early May of this year, MOWAA Members were asked to begin submitting video nominations for the 2010 competition. The video submission deadline was June 4th.

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