The focus was on Beaudesert’s strong volunteer spirit when Beaudesert Meals on Wheels marked 40 years of service to the community.
Forty years to the day since the first meals went out from the Beaudesert Showgrounds, volunteers and board members celebrated at the showgrounds, back where it all started.
40 years of Meals on Wheels
Beaudesert Meals on Wheels has celebrated its first 40 years and looked with positivity to the future.
Volunteers and board members gathered for morning tea at Beaudesert Showgrounds on 25 October, precisely 40 years since the first meals went out from the showgrounds’ kitchen on 25 October 1982.
Also present was patron and life member John Bartlett OAM, who was on the inaugural Beaudesert Meals on Wheels management committee and was President for 36 years.
Mr Bartlett shared a booklet he compiled, titled ‘Delivering the Goods 1982 – 2022 – A review of the first 40 years of service to the Beaudesert & District community’.
He said he believed the organisation was in the best position it had ever been in, despite the pandemic presenting the most challenging times in its 40-year history.
In 40 years, it has grown from humble beginnings of eight clients receiving a total 24 meals a week, to an average of more than 80 clients receiving about 250 meals a week, with the 250,000th meal delivered on 21 September this year.
President Barbara Ware Crawford said volunteers underpinned the organisation’s success.
“When we were assessed, the feedback was exceptional from the management board and record keeping to Sue Weymouth (Secretary and Coordinator) wearing two hats and being able to still achieve the meal outcomes every week,” she said.
“It wouldn’t be without all our volunteers, so thank you very much for your assistance, dedication and commitment.”
Ms Ware Crawford spoke about the organisation’s ongoing push to find a new location.
“We are quite positive – we’ve had some recent meetings with Council, and I would like all of us to be feeling positive about where we’re going,” she said.
Former volunteer Graeme Dore said it was a rewarding thing to do.
“Some of the people we serve don’t see many people often and don’t get out of their houses. They like to have us visit and they like to talk – and we let them talk because you learn a lot and they get a lot of satisfaction out of having someone to talk to,” he said.