COA is serving 52 seniors in Baldwin including home-delivered meals, homemaker services and other services. They serve 37 meals to residents in Baldwin, 251 days a year at a cost of $5.79 per meal, up 4 percent. That totals $49,128 for just that service, Domengeaux said.
She said the Council on Aging’s budget has suffered a complete cut to the meal program.
“I’m here to tell you I’m having to cut,” she said. “I’m having to cut services and employees in order to meet the needs of the needy.”
Domengeaux pointed out that recipients of the meals must be homebound. “I have made 152 home visits to verify this,” she said. “All of our services are based on need, not want.”
She said she has received a grant and the board is holding fundraisers to help soften the blow. Domengeaux asked the board to continue supporting COA.
To make ends meet, COA is holding open houses at all three centers on Sept. 12. “We’re going to dedicate a memorial wall to seniors who have partaken of our services and have passed on.”
Also Thursday, Jo Sheetz of UMCOR-Sager Brown, reported that the group has a home rehabilitation program for persons age 60 or over or are disabled and low income.
In Baldwin, Sheetz said in 2012 the organization has spent $4,617 on materials alone, with volunteer labor provided.
Sheetz said since 2003, 92 projects have been addressed in Baldwin. The group’s area extends from Franklin to Jeanerette.
Volunteers also help with Head Start centers, she said.