Community helps Edmond Senior Center keep serving meals
Three years ago, state budget cuts halted Edmond Senior Center from serving daily lunches. Six months later, the community united to fill the need, and the center continues to serve Edmond seniors who like to get together to eat and socialize.
EDMOND — With the help of the community, the Edmond Senior Center has been able to continue a meal program even though state money for it was cut.
The cut occurred three years ago, and the program was discontinued for six months before it was restarted with help from local businesses, churches, schools and other sources.
“They felt like if they had to cut their funding, the Edmond community was one site they could cut and we would survive,” center manager Gail Deaton said.
“They didn't understand that just because you're in an upper-middle-class community with a lot of professionals with higher educations, that doesn't mean there aren't people within that community that are on a fixed income. That's the part that was frustrating for us, that they didn't quite get that.”
Two women who have been participating in the center's activities for a little more than 20 years said the center is an important place for seniors for various reasons.
“When you're new in town, that's the best way to meet people,” Alma Bolvin said.
Stan Noxon has experienced this. “I've been coming here nine years. I moved to Edmond to be near family and came straight (to the center),” he said.
Bolvin and Helena Winters began coming to the center to volunteer.
“But 20 some years later we're really just too old,” Bolvin said. “We have to have someone bring us our meals now.”
When the seating for lunch starts at 11:15 a.m., seniors who require assistance can pick up a small flag to place in front of their seats that indicates they need their meal brought to them.