SINCLAIRVILLE - The Sinclairville 76ers is the Meals on Wheels program for the Cassadaga Valley area. Richard Smith of Sinclairville is the president of the organization. The 76ers began in 1976 to create senior housing, and then increased their program in 1981 to form the Meals on Wheels program. The program is a part of the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging. Meals are delivered three days a week, on three different routes in vans, and depend on the help of many volunteers. Without the volunteers, the program would not be successful, and be continuing now for more than 30 years.
Recently at the luncheon site in the Sinclairville Firehall Dining Room, a volunteer recognition day was held. Volunteers were present wearing their famous meals on wheels blue shirts, and greeted by the site manager Elsie Joy Livermore. Social worker Patti France, who has an office in the firehall, presented certificates to the many volunteers, who have worked for years. Some of the volunteers present were from the beginning of the program years ago.
Certificates of appreciation and a gift were presented to each volunteer. France asked people to stand in groups. The first group were those who had worked in the beginning, followed by those who work as table hostesses and assistants, to the drivers of the vans and delivery people, and concluded with the present delivery drivers. Appreciation of all of these people's efforts was expressed. Smith remarked that without the many volunteers, the program would not have been so successful. Many photographs of the groups were taken by vice president John Sipos. Sipos also gave the blessing prior to the luncheon, which was coordinated by Chef Lisa Rangel. The gift basket containing many local items was awarded to past driver Doug Canfield.
Susan W. Sipos was thanked for her many hours of preparing and typing the monthly menus with creative artwork. Vice President Sipos said that the success of the program is due to the efforts of Smith, Livermore, Rangel, and France. Sipos said that Smith is always concerned that the recipients on the routes get three meals delivered per week, and that the drivers check on the well being of these people.
Vice President Sipos remarked that Smith keeps the three vans in good running order and that when something needs attention, it is done immediately. Sipos said that we are concerned with the safety of the volunteers when out on the runs. Sipos said that a new van is being considered to replace an 8-year-old van, and the group has studied the various delivery vans. Sipos said that there is a cost which the 76ers will have to absorb in trading a new van, and said that anyone who would like to contribute towards the purchase of a new van may send a donation to the Sinclairville 76ers, P.O. Box 426, Sinclairville, NY 14782. Smith said any and all donations, no matter what size they are, will help.
Following the luncheon and program, a special cake to commemorate volunteer day was served to all. For more information on the Sinclairville 76ers, call 962-3455. New members are always welcome.