Our Mission Statement
Meals on Wheels of Fredericton Inc. is a not-for-profit organization with a mandate to provide nutritious meals and social support to seniors, disabled individuals, and those recovering from illness, surgery or injury; to assist them in the enhancement of a healthy and independent lifestyle.
Meals on Wheels originated in Great Britain in 1939 during World War II. During the Blitz, when German planes bombarded English soil, many people in Britain lost their homes and subsequently their ability to prepare meals for themselves. The Women’s Volunteer Service for Civil Defense responded to this emergency by preparing and delivering meals to their disadvantaged neighbors and to servicemen.
Although all records have been lost, one report claims the meals were delivered in wheelbarrows and were covered with straw to help keep them hot. The service came to be known as Meals on Wheels, and the current program of delivering healthy meals to those who need them was born.
The program continued as a peace time effort because for seniors and others who may be impaired in their ability to prepare meals for themselves, the bottom line is, it is cheaper to operate a meal delivery program to help keep people healthy in their homes, than it is to place them in institutions.
The Meals On Wheels concept has since spread to various other countries. In particular, it is strong in Australia, the United States, and Canada. A home delivery service was first made available in Fredericton by St. Paul’s United Church in 1967. The first meals cost 25 cents, if the client could afford it. For the next 11 years volunteers from various churches assisted the St. Paul’s Church group with meal preparation and they provided an average of 20 meals twice a week from September to June. Meals on Wheels grew and went on to become incorporated in 1979 and we celebrated our 30th Anniversary in 2009.