Advocacy and lobbying efforts are led by Meals on Wheels Association of Texas, a separate 501(c)(6) statewide association founded in 2004 that conducts state and national legislative advocacy on issues of importance to meals-serving organizations for seniors and adults with disabilities in need of nutritional support. Members of Meals on Wheels Association of Texas successfully worked with state legislators to pass a bill in 2007 to develop Texans Feeding Texans, a home-delivered meal grant program that currently provides $18.5 million in bi-annual funding administered by the Texas Department of Agriculture to approximately 140 meals-serving organizations across Texas. Meals on Wheels Texas and Meals on Wheels Association of Texas are coordinated yet separate organizations with separate structures, leadership, members, and focuses. Communication, association management, and board leadership support are shared between the two associations. Click here to learn more about the structure and relationship between Meals on Wheels Texas and Meals on Wheels Association of Texas.
Key Advocacy Initiatives and Priorities
In 2019, member advocacy efforts will be focused on engaging with legislators to educate them on the continuing need for the Texans Feeding Texans program. These efforts are important NOW so that we can:
- Increasing the HHSC home delivered meal reimbursement rate through supporting approval of the exceptional item request from HHSC for $7.8M for the 20-21 biennium.
- Protecting the Texas Department of Agriculture Texans Feeding Texans home-delivered meals grant from additional cuts, and continue trying to rebuild the program to its original $20 million appropriation.
- Monitoring legislation related to Managed Care Organizations and other issues to ensure that meals on wheels programs can be equitably included as service providers and that the value of the meals on wheels network over for profit providers is recognized
What Can You Do?
- Invite your local legislators to participate in delivering meals
- Write to your local legislators expressing thanks for the receipt of the funds (include a client story and/or the impact of the funds in your area)
- Ask your volunteers and donors to thank your local legislators for the grant program.
- Create a media event and invite Sid Miller to present a check for the amount of area TDA funding
- Provide a quote to the MOWAT board and data on how the funds were used that can be used in advocacy efforts
Contact Elected Officials
Who Represents Me provides information about current districts and contact information for your representatives in the Texas Senate, Texas House of Representatives, the Texas delegation to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, and the State Board of Education.
Meals on Wheels Texas also works closely with Meals on Wheels America to support continuation of federal funding for the Older Americans Act (OAA) and policies that benefit the elderly population that receives home-delivered meals. Meals on Wheels America is focusing on the following:
- Ending sequestration & sustaining federal funding for Older Americans Act nutrition programs
- Protecting & strengthening the Older Americans Act
- Supporting proposals to modify the tax code & increase charitable donations
- Improving access to other fedreal nutrition programs that benefit seniors
Click here to read their full advocacy agenda.