SRPH students volunteer with local Meals on Wheels program for several years

March 19, 2007

(COLLEGE STATION, TX) — Students from the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health have consistently participated in the Brazos Valley Meals on Wheels program since the component first opened its doors.

Through the HSC-SRPH Rural Public Health Student Association, students deliver 20-25 meals every Wednesday morning, and student Amanda Reichle coordinates the volunteering efforts.

The student association’s mission is to increase the awareness of public health, facilitate opportunities for community service, and provide a connection between students and public health professionals. Community service is a large part of its activities and a rewarding experience for students.

“I have been doing Meals on Wheels for two consecutive years now, and it is an awesome experience,” Ms. Reichle said. “I am very humbled by the way just driving a simple route of food in your car can touch the lives of citizens, even if you only see them for a minute a day. You see them every week, they remember your face, and they get cheerful to just say ‘Hello’ to someone new.”

Very few groups have been with the Meals on Wheels program as long as the HSC-SRPH students. Carolyn Hall, senior services director at the Brazos Valley Community Action Agency, said there are not many student volunteers.

“They (HSC-SRPH students) are a very faithful group,” Ms. Hall said. “As much as they have going on with exams and everything, they are very dedicated. Each year, there is a changing of the post, but they continue and really keep up with it.”

To volunteer with the Brazos Valley Meals on Wheels, contact Ms. Hall at (979) 823-2203.

The Texas A&M Health Science Center provides the state with health education, outreach and research. Its six components located in communities throughout Texas are Baylor College of Dentistry, the College of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Institute of Biosciences and Technology, the Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy, and the School of Rural Public Health.

— Rae Lynn Mitchell