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      Meals on Wheels in need of donations

      Joseph Heringlake has been a volunteer driver for Meals on Wheels for nearly 15 years.

      He has also delivered meals along the same route for 15 years.

      "They usually come at the same time, which is good for me," said Francis Folder, a Meals on Wheels client.

      Francis Folder has been a client and friend along Joseph's route for 11 of those years.

      "We share gardening tips, and she has a really good sense of humor, and I tend to be a little ironic myself," Heringlake said.

      Francis qualified for Meals on Wheels because she's unable to cook for herself.

      "I can't drive, I don't have a car, I had to get rid of my car," Folder said.

      Francis is one of nearly 3,000 elderly clients that Meals on Wheels serves each week.

      Lisa Robitshek, the Manager of Meals on Wheels said the program receives state and federal funds for only half of the clients they serve.

      "This year the need has just continued to grow and we have started a waiting list beginning in August," Robitshek said. "Right now what we're doing is for every two clients that go off the waiting list, we can add one on. The more money we can raise the more we can say you don't have to be on a waiting list."

      Northwest Michigan Community Action Agency has launched a fundraising campaign to raise $60,000 by Sept. 15.

      "We've already been very blessed with grants from Sara Lee corporation ($15,000), Oleson Foundation ($5,000), BASA ($2,500)," Robitshek said. "We've raised about $22,500 and we have about $60,000 more that we want to raise."

      If you'd like to donate you can visit www.mealswheelslove.org, contact Lisa Robitshek at (231) 947-3780 or 1(800)632-7334, or email her at lrobitshek@nmcaa.net.