Dinners with Love feeds hospice clients

ADDISON COUNTY — Organizers of the Middlebury Maple Run recently named Dinners with Love as one of six local nonprofits to receive proceeds from their annual half-marathon, relay, and three-mile fun run. The event is set to take place on Sunday, May 6 in Middlebury.
Dinners with Love is a network of hospice agencies, restaurants, and volunteers who bring free meals to hospice patients and their families. Last year, volunteers delivered 2,082 meals donated by 68 restaurants to 155 homes throughout Vermont. The nonprofit hopes to exceed last year’s impact by focusing, in part, on growing its program in Addison County. The grant from the Middlebury Maple Run is intended to support this project.
Dinners with Love currently serves eight hospice families every week in this area of the state, but would like to be serving 20 at any given time by the end of 2018. To accomplish this, they need more restaurants to donate meals and more volunteers to pick-up and deliver those meals to patients’ homes. Dinners with Love will use the grant funds from the Middlebury Maple Run to cover costs associated with volunteer recruitment and training, restaurant outreach and onboarding, as well as staff time to coordinate the program and manage the increased number of families, restaurants, and volunteers.
 “If you have ever lost a loved one after a long illness, then you know how challenging the end-of-life can be,” said Dinners with Love Executive Director Sarah Audet. “We are here to ensure that both patient and caregiver feel nourished, comforted, and supported by their community.”
Addison County restaurants that currently donate meals to hospice patients and their families through the program include: The Bobcat Café, The Bridge Restaurant, Coriander, Costello’s, Cubbers, Halfway House Restaurant, Jessica’s Restaurant at the Swift House Inn, Mr. Up’s Restaurant & Pub, The Storm Café, and Two Brothers Tavern.
As part of their growth in the region, Dinners with Love has also joined the Addison County Chamber of Commerce. “We want to get to know our nonprofit and business neighbors better,” said Audet. “There are a lot of opportunities for collaboration to make our corner of Vermont a great place to live and work.”
For more information, visit dinnerswithlove.org or call 802-465-1027.

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