Since the start of the pandemic, Council on Aging (COA) has delivered more than 25,000 “comfort meals,” prepared by local restaurants, to the doors of low-income seniors in our service area. A key partner in this effort is COA service provider, Meals on Wheels of Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky, based in Price Hill.
COA recently recognized Meals on Wheels employee, Carolyn Folden, for her critical role in elivering these meals. Carolyn received COA’s Service Excellence Award – an award presented to employees of contracted service providers to recognize the important role they play in preserving independence and dignity for older adults in our region.
Carolyn is a coordinator extraordinaire. There are many moving parts that make up COA’s comfort meal program, and Carolyn’s commitment is just what is needed to make things come off smoothly.
She makes numerous calls each day, coordinating with COA, senior buildings and restaurants to match the correct number of meals with available drivers and vehicles. She then determines the order of deliveries and contacts each senior building with an approximate delivery time.
She also makes sure “her drivers” (as she calls the Meals on Wheels drivers) are putting their best foot forward. During her regular meetings with the drivers, she makes sure to stress the need for courtesy, privacy and professionalism.
Council on Aging CEO Suzanne Burke said, “Carolyn performs a critical role in our comfort meal program. Her coordination and communication with COA, Meals on Wheels drivers and restaurant employees is tremendous. She is a pleasure to work with – professional, positive and results-oriented.”
Carolyn’s four years at Meals on Wheels have earned her the reputation of being a very positive worker who can do it all. In fact, her coworkers are fond of saying, “Miss. Carolyn will take care of everything!”
“This means so much to Carolyn,” says Jennifer Steele, executive director of Meals on Wheels. “She has worked tirelessly on behalf of seniors throughout the pandemic and is so dedicated and committed to our mission. I can’t think of anyone more deserving, and I know that she will be so touched that you have taken the time to recognize her contributions. She really enjoys working with you and the rest of the COA team — as do I.”