In order to qualify for the meals on wheels food delivery program, seniors must be at least 60 years of age, be home bound or have a disability that limits mobility outside the home. Meals on wheels offers funded and paid meal service. Low-income seniors living in urban or rural areas, and seniors facing the prospect of living in a senior care facility, can apply for government-funded meals through local assistance programs.
Seniors living in areas where there is a great demand for funded meals on wheels are sometimes placed on a waiting list after an application for the program is approved. Paid meals are delivered to seniors who are able to afford covering the cost of each meal. Costs per meal vary depending on who is running the program, but costs are equivalent to affordable fast food meals.
Home-delivered meals provided by meals on wheels are designed to provide at least one nutritious meal a day to the neediest seniors. Many seniors who receive meals from this type of program live alone, and a majority are age 75 or older. Meals are prepared by a registered dietitian and can be made to accommodate seniors with special dietary restrictions such as low-salt or no sugar. Seniors receive meals during regular business hours Monday through Friday, plus some weekends and holidays.