Gift provides funds for Meals for Vets program to provide access to a free daily meal for Veterans, their families, and surviving spouses in rural and underserved areas in Texas
FREDERICKSBURG (HONOR VETERANS NOW) — November 2, 2022 – Meals for Vets, the flagship program of Honor Veterans Now, received $75,000 grant from The Meadows Foundation to support the fight against food insecurity among Veterans, their families, and surviving spouses. The grant is targeted to be used in 235 counties in Texas that are either rural in nature or don’t have access to the same amount of philanthropy as major metropolitan areas. The grant will supplement existing grant funding and help to expand the effort in these areas. Grant funding will provide funds to travel to many remote areas of Texas to meet with Veterans resources groups and personnel to aid in locating those in need. It will also allow us to help spread the word among Veterans and potential donors to assist our cause.
“We’re honored that The Meadows Foundation has chosen to support the efforts of the Meals for Vets program,” said Honor Veterans Now Executive Director Melinda Froess. “This grant will give us an opportunity to engage with Veterans struggling with food insecurity in rural areas of Texas, and underserved areas. As Honor Veterans Now operates strictly from grants and donations, we hope that our presence in these areas will resonate with potential donors to our Meals for Vets program as well.”
Our first objective is to identify Veterans and surviving spouses who need our services. To do this, we meet with Veterans County Service Officers (VCSO), VA clinic caseworkers, and Veteran coordinators at universities, colleges, technical institutes, and trade schools, discuss with them the services that we provide, and ask for their assistance to identify likely candidate Veterans or surviving spouses for our program. Once candidate Veterans have been identified, the VCSO, VA clinic caseworker, or school Veteran administrator contacts the Veteran and provides them with information and literature on our Meals for Vets program. It is then up to the Veteran or surviving spouse to contact Meals for Vets. To apply for our service the Veteran calls our office or goes online, fills out an application, and submits the required documentation. Once the Veteran is accepted, meals can be provided in as little as four to ten days.
About The Meadows Foundation
The Meadows Foundation was established in 1948 by Algur H. and Virginia Meadows to benefit and serve the people of Texas. The Foundation has disbursed more than $1.32 billion to 3,600 organizations across the state. Grants are awarded to 501(c)(3) organizations and public institutions in arts and culture, civic and public affairs, education, environment, health, human services, and initiatives focused on postsecondary completion, educator preparation, water conservation, depression, and homelessness. For additional information, visit www.mfi.org.
About Honor Veterans Now
Honor Veterans Now (HVN), a 501(c)(3) non-profit, was founded by Tom Wollny, a USAF Korean War Veteran, when he discovered a significant number of Veterans in central Texas were suffering from hunger. In 2015, Tom and his wife Caroline, began anonymously meeting the needs of hungry Veterans as donors. After talking with various Veteran service providers, they discovered that very few programs were able to meet the needs of hungry Veterans under the age of 60 due to eligibility restrictions of the Older Americans Act (OAA) of 1965. They also found that the local senior center would feed Veterans under age 60 if the meals were paid for. Therefore, the Wollnys negotiated an arrangement with the local senior center and hungry Veterans started coming in.
Tom Wollny was a proud Korean War Veteran who initially used his Air Force training to maintain USAF radar units. After leaving the service, he used the GI Bill to pursue a degree in engineering, became a Professional Engineer (P.E.), and applied his lifelong love and expertise of electronics to the development of an improved land mine detection system using ground penetrating radar that can detect plastic explosives. Tom’s world-changing invention is recognized as the most advanced landmine detection system available and is now being used for humanitarian de-mining and to protect our armed forces worldwide—and it is saving hundreds of thousands of lives and limbs.
About Meals for Vets
Honor Veterans Now accomplishes its mission of providing meals to Veterans, their families, and surviving spouses through its Meals for Vets program. HVN collaborates and contracts with local (e.g. Meals on Wheels, college and university dining facilities) or national (e.g. Mom’s Meals) meal providers on a reimbursement basis. Meals are provided by home delivery, or by congregate method at senior centers or university dining facilities, or we have the meals shipped to them if they are not at home every day or live outside of the meal provider service area. To date, the Meals for Vets program has provided over 220,000 meals to more than 850 Veterans in Texas.