New Grocery Delivery Program in Stanley
The local Faith in Action program and the Stanley IGA grocery store introduced a new shopping and delivery service for community members who are elderly or disabled. The service began in February 2011.
Jill Pollert, BSW, Ministry Our Lady of Victory Hospital (MOLVH) Community Link specialist, coordinates Faith in Action. This interfaith volunteer caregiver program is sponsored by MOLVH and is a partnership between the hospital and several area churches. It provides basic support to the elderly, people who are disabled, and mothers. One of the main services is providing transportation to medical appointments. Other supportive services include grocery shopping, errands, companionship, and telephone reassurance calls.
Jill said the idea for the new service came from a former area resident who volunteered for a similar program through Faith in Action in Sparta, Wis. She said, “Lloyd Larson told me about the success of their program in Sparta. Since this is consistent with our Faith in Action mission, we were enthusiastic about supporting a similar program in Stanley.”
Larson initiated the project, and contacted the Stanley-area churches and the local IGA store. “While I was working on reservations for the Stanley All-School Alumni Association meeting last year, I talked to several senior citizens. Upon noting the lack of a grocery delivery program, coupled with a lack of taxi service, I saw the need for a similar one-day-per-week shopping for seniors and shut-ins for Stanley. Such a program is presently operating successfully in Sparta under the Faith in Action organization sponsorship,” said Larson.
Larson learned that the there was a local Faith in Action program. After meeting with the IGA grocery reps, he contacted Pollert and Pastor Sarah Semmler-Smith, of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, who both responded positively. Volunteers were then sought from the community. A sufficient number have responded and the program launched.
Pastor Semmler-Smith was instrumental in supporting the project and recruiting volunteers. “Where there was a person in need, that's where you saw Jesus at work in the gospels. Today, we are called to be Christ's hands and feet in the world – working for peace, justice, and love of our neighbors in real and concrete ways. If the need of the people is for access to groceries, then we are called to make that happen, as far as it depends on us,” she said.
Here’s how it will work:
- Orders are taken only on Wednesdays, from 8-9 a.m.
- People call the IGA at 715.644.5842 to give their order.
- If they do not specify a brand for an item, volunteers select the least expensive brand
- Volunteers shop, bag and deliver the groceries that day.
- Volunteers also collect payment. Participants can provide the store a credit card number or pay by check or cash. Volunteers will not be able to make change.
- This service is available only to people who reside within the city limits of Stanley.
- There is no charge for this service.
Jill said that 14 homebound individuals have used the service this year, and that the team delivers groceries to an average of seven homes per week.