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Gas Prices Hurt Volunteer Drivers For Meals On Wheels In Yolo County

WOODLAND (CBS13) -- When Joy Cohan saw the surge in gas prices, it didn't take her long to worry.

"Well, certainly how it would impact us budgetarily," she said.

Cohan is the executive director of Meals on Wheels Yolo County. The non-profit organization serves up to 400 seniors per week. From Monday to Friday, clients can count on hot and frozen meals whipped up inside a Woodland kitchen.

Its annual budget is $2 million with most of the funding coming from private donations and it's having to stretch its wallet. Rising inflation and skyrocketing gas prices are presenting challenges.

A majority of the food prepared is used for home deliveries. Volunteer drivers keep the services running from Winters to West Sacramento, typically in their own cars. But staggering gas prices have some drivers hitting the brakes.

"We have one volunteer who has requested to use one of our vehicles instead of her own vehicle," Cohan said.

Cohan agreed to the request.

Meals on Wheels owns seven vehicles. There are 40 routes that make it impossible for every volunteer to have access to the vehicles.

If drivers can't make rounds, then the group might have to pull staff for routes but it might disrupt operations like meal prepping.

"So, we might have to entertain reducing the number of seniors that we serve if push came to shove," Cohan said.

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