Employment First Works - Leo's Story
Volunteering with Meals on Wheels is an important part of Leo’s life. He will tell you that giving makes him happy. As much as Leo enjoys delivering meals, he really likes talking to the people he delivers to. He especially likes bringing meals to Chester and Annie so he can take time to chat with them. Another important part for Leo is the time he spends with his friends. Leo said, “Volunteering with my Merakey friends is the best.” Leo and his delivery friends are supported by a staff person, starting their day at the Carbondale senior center where coolers and meals are picked up. The appropriate number and type of meal for each person on that day’s list are checked and then sorted in the coolers in the order they are to be delivered. Meals are taken to each home and a signature from the person is obtained. Part of the volunteer responsibilities includes checking on people to assure they are fine and do not need anything. Following delivery of the meals, coolers are returned to the senior center to be filled for the next day.
Leo not only volunteers delivering Meals on Wheels two days a week, he is also competitively employed, holding two jobs! Leo has worked at Weis Market in Carbondale for close to 20 years. You will find him there every Wednesday from 9am to noon helping shoppers bag their groceries. He enjoys interacting with the customers, often receiving tips for his assistance which he really likes! On Friday and Saturday evenings, Leo works at the Windsor Inn in Jermyn as a dishwasher. He loves working in the kitchen cleaning dishes and chatting with his team mates. It is evident that Leo has a meaningful and fulfilling life. He is a contributing member of the Carbondale community where he has found valued roles as a volunteer, friend, employee, and coworker!