By Elena Saviolakis
WASHINGTON, DC – The Daughters of Penelope (DOP), a leading international service organization comprised of women of Hellenic heritage and Philhellenes, kicked off the New Year by launching a national project series which included weekly webinars on each of their national projects through February. The seventh and final webinar of the series was about Meals on Wheels, and live streamed on Thursday, February 25, with Meals on Wheels President & CEO Ellie Hollander and Meals on Wheels Chief Development Officer Kristine Templin. At the conclusion of the webinar, the Daughters of Penelope proudly presented a $10,000 donation to Meals on Wheels America. Grand President Kachmarski presented the donation to Meals on Wheels America President & CEO Ellie Hollander. This is the fourth $10,000 donation in as many years to Meals on Wheels America.
Meals on Wheels America is the leadership organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior isolation and hunger. This network serves virtually every community in America and, along with more than two million staff and volunteers, delivers the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that enable America’s seniors to live nourished lives with independence and dignity. By providing funding, leadership, education, research and advocacy support, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time.
“While the country looks ahead to a post-COVID life, we know that Meals on Wheels programs and seniors will have a much longer road to recovery,” said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO, Meals on Wheels America. “That’s why we’re so grateful for continued support from donors like the Daughters of Penelope. Together, we can deliver so much more than a meal to vulnerable seniors in need.”
“Three out of four Meals on Wheels programs believe there is unmet need for home-delivered meals in their community – and 62% of local programs can’t keep up their current senior client list without continued financial support,” said Kristine Templin, Chief Development Office, Meals on Wheels America. “We are inspired by the generosity of the Daughters of Penelope, and hope others join them to ensure no senior is forgotten.”
Guest panelists in addition to Meals on Wheels President & CEO Ellie Hollander and Meals on Wheels Chief Development Officer Kristine Templin included Daughters of Penelope Grand President Celia Kachmarski, Daughters of Penelope Grand Secretary Georgette Boulegeris, Daughters of Penelope Grand Governor Kathy Matrakas, and Daughters of Penelope Executive Director Elena Saviolakis.
“We are proud to support the worthy mission of Meals on Wheels America and its vision of an America in which all seniors live nourished lives with independence and dignity,” Grand President Kachmarski said. “Our support of Meals on Wheels America dovetails with our community service programs that assist our nation’s elderly who are vulnerable and are in need. For example, Meals on Wheels serves many residents of AHEPA’s and Daughters’ 91 affordable elderly housing properties. The fourth $10,000 donation made by the Daughters of Penelope was made possible by the late Mr. Nicholas Economy. The Daughters of Penelope is proud to honor his memory and his wishes to help the elderly in need.”
The next webinar hosted by Grand President Celia Kachmarski and the Daughters of Penelope will be on March 8th celebrating International Women’s Day. The panel will consist of empowering speakers including Greek American Cookbook Author & Celebrity Chef Diane Kochilas, Soprano Eleni Calenos, Author, Painter, Politician & Sculptor Marina Vamvakas, and Professional Artist Katerina Mertikas. The webinar will discuss their journey, inspiration, and legacy.