Eradicating world hunger is a monumental task, but ensuring no senior in Cayman goes hungry this year is well within reach.
Meals on Wheels is holding a festive “Orange You Glad” gala on Saturday, that includes a three-course dinner with unlimited wine, to help fund its efforts to provide free, hot meals to Cayman’s older residents.
The gala starts at 6 p.m. at Luca restaurant, where in addition to the fine dining, there will be entertainment from Vicki Wheaton, live and silent auctions and a 50/50 raffle, in which the funds collected are the prize, with half going to the winner and half to Meals on Wheels.
Live auction items include tickets to a Taylor Swift concert; a weekend staycation at the Caribbean Club; one-week stay at a two-bedroom apartment in central Paris; and a five-night stay for two adults at Rickety Bridge Country House in South Africa, including breakfast, one lunch at the winery with tutored wine tasting and two gourmet dinners.
The event will have a definite orange theme – with an orange-colored dessert and signature drink, and those attending are also encouraged to wear orange. The name was chosen because orange is the official color of hunger, said Meals on Wheels executive director Beulah McField.
Meals on Wheels held its first fundraising gala last year when the increased demand for meals began to make the organization’s survival look uncertain.
“At one point, we didn’t know if we were going to get through another month,” McField said. “These people would have gone hungry without our help. Fortunately, the whole of Cayman came together to get us through that rough patch.”
An aging population and an increase in chronic, degenerative diseases have led to an increasing number of people in Cayman who are either physically or financially unable to prepare meals for themselves.
The program has grown from feeding just 13 George Town residents when it began 17 years ago, to supplying meals to 170 people living in George Town, Bodden Town, East End and West Bay.
There are more older people in West Bay the organization would like to assist, McField said, and by next year they aim to also serve the North Side area, where they have identified at least 20 individuals or households in need.
For those who are unable to attend the gala, there are many other ways to contribute, including monetary donations and stocking the pantry. Those with time to spare can also volunteer to deliver meals, visit the elderly and assist with fundraising.
Tickets for the gala are available from Meals on Wheels and Deloitte offices in George Town, or online at CaymanGiftCertificates.com. Tickets are $150 per person or $1500 for a corporate table. For additional information, call 949-3905 or 916-5967.