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​Frequently Asked Questions
General Frequently Asked Questions
  1. What is the Senior Citizens Nutrition Program?
    The Senior Citizens Nutrition Program is a meal program for seniors in Mecklenburg County. It is part of the national Elderly Nutrition Program which is authorized under the Older Americans Act. In Mecklenburg County, the program is administered by the Department of Social Services. The goal of our program is to promote health, independence and functionality of older adults through provision of nutritionally balanced meals, nutrition education and engagement in physical activity and social interactions.
  2. What services do we provide?
    We provide the following four types of services: Hot lunch dine-in program at 18 sites in Mecklenburg County Home-delivered meal program Liquid nutrition supplement program for seniors with medical need Short Term home delivered meal program for seniors discharged from a hospital, rehabilitation facility or a nursing home.
  3. Who is eligible for the services?
    Individuals have to be 60+ years of age and residents of Mecklenburg County to be eligible for any of the four services. Each service has specific eligibility requirements.
  4. Is there a fee to receive any of the services?
    There is no cost to receive any of the three services. A voluntary donation is requested.
  5. Where does the funding come from to provide the four services?
    The services are funded by federal, state and local dollars.
  6. Can people with diabetes or any other health conditions eat these meals?
    Our dine-in and home delivered meals are balanced and heart healthy and suitable to be consumed by people with diabetes and heart disease. However, we recommend that you consult with your physician before you enroll in the program if you are on a special diet. Each meal includes a minimum of 2-3oz. meat entrée, 2 servings of bread/starch, 2-3 servings of fruits/vegetables and a 8 ounce carton of milk.

Dine-In (Congregate) Program Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where are the dine-in sites located?
The meals are served at 18 sites which are located in senior centers, churches, community centers, and housing facilities throughout Mecklenburg County.

2. When can I attend the sites?
Dining rooms are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm.

3. In addition to a meal, are there any other services that are provided at meal sites?
Seniors who attend this program participate in variety of programs such as exercise, arthritis management, arts and crafts, bingo and trips. The meal site is an ideal place for seniors to socialize and build companionship. There are also volunteer opportunities that are offered to seniors at the site.

4. Do I have to participate in the other programs or can I just pick up my meal and leave?
We encourage seniors to participate in health and wellness and social activities at the site as a way of enhancing the quality of life.. We don’t provide a take-out meal service.

5. Do you offer transportation to the sites?
Transportation is often available for those who have trouble getting to sites on their own.

6. What criteria do I have to meet to qualify for the dine-in meal service?
Must be a Mecklenburg County resident and 60 + years old. Spouse of an enrolled customer is eligible for service regardless of age. In addition, individuals under 60 years of age with disabilities are eligible if they reside with an individual enrolled in the dine- in service.

7. How do I apply for Congregate Meal Services?
Call Just 1 Call (704-432-1111) or Senior Nutrition Information Line (704-336-3144) to obtain information on location of sites Call Just 1 Call if client needs county transportation service to go to a nutrition site Visit the closest site and complete registration form

Home-Delivered Meals Frequently Asked Questions

“Meals on wheels” is a well-known term used for many home-delivered meal programs. Our home-delivered meals program is a meals on wheels programs in Mecklenburg County.

1. Is the Mecklenburg home-delivered meal program similar to the other meals on wheels programs in the nation?
“Meals on wheels” is a well-known term used for many home-delivered meal programs. Our home-delivered meals program is a meals on wheels programs in Mecklenburg County.

2. Are we the same program as Friendship Trays?
We are a different organization than Friendship Trays program. Friendship Trays is a nonprofit organization that also delivers meals to individuals in the community.

3. Are the meals delivered to homebound individuals hot, cold or frozen?
We deliver frozen meals once a week to our customers. This way, customers can heat the meal of their choice and eat it at anytime of the day.

4. How many meals does each customer receive per week?
We deliver 2 meals, 5 meals or 7 meals per week depending on the need of each customer.

5. Who delivers the meals for the home-delivered meal program?
Trained drivers hired by Mecklenburg County deliver meals to clients each week. Meals are transported in specially equipped refrigerated trucks.

6. What criteria do individuals have to meet to qualify for the home-delivered program?
Must be 60+ and resident of Mecklenburg County. Customer must be homebound which means leaving home is a major effort because of physical impairment. When client leaves home, it must be for medical care or for short infrequent non-medical reasons such as trip to get a haircut or to attend religious services or adult day care Physically or mentally unable to shop and/or prepare meals. Has no other responsible person who is able and or willing to assist with meal preparation on a daily basis Unable to participate in congregate nutrition program due to physical or mental impairment The spouse of the customer is eligible regardless of age Adult protective customers or individuals at risk for adult protective services Under 60 with documented disability and living with a homebound meal customer Caregiver of the customer is eligible for service if it reduces care giving responsibilities.

7. Who can make referrals for the home-delivered program?
Individuals must call Just 1 Call to apply for home delivered meal service. Family, friends, caregivers, social workers, and neighbors can also call and make referrals.

Short Term Homebound Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Short Term Homebound Meal Program?
This home delivered meal service is for seniors who need meals for a short period of time (less than 12 weeks) after they are discharged from a hospital, nursing home or rehabilitation facility. To be eligible for this service, individuals must be temporary homebound and incapable of shopping/or preparing their meals. They also do not have any other person to prepare meals for them on a regular basis.

2. If I need additional service at the end of 12 weeks how do I continue service?
You will need to call Just1Call at 704-432-1111 to apply for regular homebound meal services.

3. How many meals does each customer receive per week?
We deliver 2 meals, 5 meals or 7 meals per week depending on the need of each customer.

4. Who can make referrals for the short term home-delivered program?
Referrals for this program can be made by discharge planners, DSS employees, family, and friends. The customers in this program will start receiving service within 1-2 days after a home visit is done and assessment is completed. Inquires for short term meal service can be made by calling the SCNP information line 704-336-3144.

Supplemental Meals Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Supplemental Meals Program?
This program provides 2 cans of liquid nutrition supplement such as Ensure per day for a period of six months or less with a doctor’s authorization. After six months, an assessment is completed again to determine if supplements should be continued. Service is terminated after a 12-month period.

2. What criteria do I have to meet to qualify for the Supplemental Meal Service?
Must be Mecklenburg County residents, age 60+ who need nutrition supplements because of a medical need. An authorization from the individual’s physician is needed. This is obtained by a DSS Social Worker.

3. How do I apply for Supplemental Meals?
Applications can be made by calling Mecklenburg County’s Just 1 Call service (704-432-1111).

4. Will you deliver the supplements?
No, we do not deliver supplements to customers. The product must be picked up by customers or volunteers from the Senior Nutrition warehouse at 500 Spratt Street, Charlotte, NC 28206 on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month. Contact your social worker if you are unable to pick up supplements and they may be able to make arrangements for someone to pick up the product for you.

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