Power of the Purse as important as ever to help fund Mobile Meals

Positively Tennessee

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — We’ve been keeping you updated during the pandemic with efforts to make sure Knox County seniors stay healthy and safe in their homes.

Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee Mobile Meals is providing food and support to more than 1,200 seniors, an increase of 150 people each day since COVID-19 hit back in March.

Now, the nonprofit’s biggest fundraiser, Power of the Purse, set for later this month, has had to change with these challenging times. Mobile Meals is keeping things positive in a fun way you can still take part in the event, and help seniors like Roxy who I had the pleasure to meet.

One of the first things Roxy said to us?

“Am I allowed to say how young I am?”

I answered, “Well, I wasn’t going to ask you but if you would like to volunteer that information …”

“Well , I am serious,” Roxy said. “Trust me, I am 97 now, and I think that God has blessed me richly.”

Roxy is indeed blessed to be able to live on her own with her treasured possessions, including the motivational quotes and Bible verses she has placed on a kitchen cabinet. She also enjoys the beautiful view from her picture window.

One downside is preparing meals. Roxy fell asleep recently while waiting for a pan of sausage to finish cooking.

“I had a whole skillet full,” she said, “and I had to throw it out to the crows. I didn’t get to eat it; it was too brown.”

Roxy has come to depend on CAC Mobile Meals for the food and wellness checks.

“I’m telling the truth on these,” she said. “I have met some wonderful people and some glorious meals.”

Roxy is just one of many seniors benefiting from the popular Power of the Purse event, a fundraising frenzy enjoyed by 500 women for going on six years now. COVID-19 has forced Power of the Purse to cancel this year’s in-person party at a time when Mobile Meals is serving more seniors than ever before.

“Our government funding is only 31 percent of our budget,” Mobile Meals Director Judith Pelot said. “So it’s very important that we spend the time and raise the funds so that anybody that calls can get a meal. We don’t want somebody to call and say, ‘you’ve got to wait for an unknown amount of time.'”

“When they’re calling , they’re hungry now. They need the help now. They can’t wait on us.”

So, get ready, purse lovers. Later this month you’ll have the chance to bid on beautiful bags by Knoxville’s own Patricia Nash; and while you wait, consider donating to the cause.

Remember, each meal costs only $3.40.

Remember our friends like Roxy.

“If you ever take this type of food,” she says, “be happy and proud that you can get it.”

To keep the purse excitement alive, a few exclusive Patricia Nash Collection packages will be up for bid in an auction taking place over a three-day period starting 8 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22, through 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24.

Visit knoxseniors.org to donate and view auction packages.


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