Volunteering to help out in your community is one amazing way to make a difference. That is why so many people, especially during the holiday season, are trying their best to offer their time right here in Hamilton County. But what about kids? And other family members? Volunteering with your family may not come to mind when you think of giving back, but sharing your family’s love with a cause that matters to you is a great way to make a lasting impact. And volunteering with Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County is one fulfilling way to get everyone in on the fun. 

More hearts means more love to deliver

We spoke with long time Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County volunteer, Brooks Reed, about his experience volunteering with both his mother, Betty, and his grandsons. That is four generations of volunteers! Reed’s parents were involved with the origins of Meals on Wheels back in the 70’s in Tennessee and he has been driving compassion ever since he got his license. 

Although it was originally a method to keep him out of trouble as a teen, it has also taught him the beauty of giving back, something that has stuck with him his entire life. He hopes to pass this on through his grandchildren, Kazuma and Yukio. When asked what volunteering together has meant to their family, Reed reflects. “Any time we are together is a memory in the making, and we all seem to enjoy it and certainly love the times together. The boys love being with their great grandmother and who doesn’t love being with grandchildren any chance we get?” 

Brooks Reed with his mother, Betty Reed, and grandsons Kazuma, Yukio and Takashi Reed.

Kids can help out too!

As it turns out, kids are great volunteers and choosing something as hands on as delivering meals to those in need is a great way to teach compassion, cooperation and responsibility. Reeds says his grandsons know the routine and each has their own special job when they reach a house for delivery. They even remind each other to close the coolers and know how to check to make sure they have the right meal for the right client. 

Although children these days have the whole world at their fingertips with just the click of a button, there is something wholesome and lifegiving in interacting with those in need right here in their own community. Volunteering is an active way to teach kids about gratitude and empathy for those in need. Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County is a great way to get kids involved and on the move! 

Spend time with aging parents

Reed also loves the time he gets with his mother while driving the routes for Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County. As this organization has been so important in her life, it is a rewarding and beautiful way to keep their bond strong. His mother even remembers routes before the GPS is able to chime in. 

Volunteering with aging loved ones is a great way to spend time together. Those small day-to-day interactions are so vital to our healthy social connections and relationships. Ironically, by spending time together volunteering for Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County, Brooks and his mother are helping to break the isolation faced by many homebound residents right here in our community. 

When it comes to making a lasting impact in your community, volunteering with your family members holds many benefits. More people to take on tasks is a great reason to summon the troops, but bonding with your family is a welcome side effect from helping out with a common goal in mind. 

We want to thank Brooks and his family for sharing their beautiful and heartwarming story and encourage those who were touched by it to start service projects within their own families. If you are interested in volunteering with Meals on Wheels of Hamilton County, head to our website today to fill out an application!