GP offers rides, food for elderly

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Every day, the small building at the corner of Wyanoke and Eighth streets is bustling with activity. There are meals to be made, boxed and delivered and local residents who need to be taken to the appointments.

The controlled chaos is part of the daily routine at G&P Meals and Transportation.

The business was started in April by Rick Pancake and three others who saw a need to help the community. They serve residents of Lawrence, Scioto , Jackson and Gallia counties.

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G&P, which has 10 employees, delivers lunch and dinner five days a week to senior citizens. On the weekends, they deliver frozen meals and “self stable” meals, those that do not have to be refrigerated. All of the meals are evaluated and approved by a dietician on staff, Pancake said.

The business accepts payments from the Passport program and waiver vouchers through the Ohio Department of Aging. Customers and their families can also pay for the meals out of their pockets.

“Our goal is to provide a hot meal to people who may not get one otherwise,” said Pancake, former food service director at River Valley Health Systems. “A lot of people cannot get out and drive and they depend on us for that meal.”

He said a person can sign up for meals themselves or someone who has a loved one in need of meals can also make arrangements to have meals delivered and paid for.

“For families, especially if they live out of town, having the meals delivered (to their loved ones) helps them know that they are being taken care of. They know that they will at least have a hot meal,” Pancake said.

G & P is not just delivering meals, though. The employees are delivering smiles, conversation and companionship to people who may not have those things otherwise.

“It’s really a wonderful thing,” Pancake said. “I love to get in there sometimes and help cook and deliver meals. It’s just a great thing.”

Transportation is another major part of G & P’s business. They offer elderly residents rides to doctor’s visits and other medical-related appointments. Pancake said payments from the state aging programs are accepted as well as private pay. Prices are determined on where the trip originates and ends.

“A lot of people don’t realize that we offer transportation services. It is a very important part of what we do. It’s something that we feel is very important in the community,” Pancake said.

The business is hoping to expand in the near future to offer more services to its customers.

For more information about meals or transportation call G & P at (740) 532-4044.