Quick Facts:


  • Nutrition & Services for Seniors (NSS) was established in 1983, and is the largest, most stable resource for home delivered meals to seniors in Southeast Texas, nationally recognized by Meals on Wheel America as the Meals on Wheels provider for Jefferson and Hardin counties in Texas.
  • All meals served meet 1/3 of the required daily allowances (RDA) for older adults and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
  • The Collaborative Innovations for Community Health grant in connection with It’s Time Texas and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas allows NSS to provide over 6,000 meals to homebound clients in critical need of life-saving food and friendship.
  • Meals are delivered daily, Monday-Friday, and NSS provides nearly 1,800 homebound elderly and disabled residents of Jefferson and Hardin counties with nutritious meals required for independent living.

The Project


Nutrition and Services for Seniors (NSS) is a non-profit entity established in 1983, and is the largest, most stable resource for home delivered meals to seniors in Southeast Texas. The noon meal offered to clients form the foundation upon which NSS builds all programs and services. Without NSS assistance, thousands of homebound elderlies and disabled would find themselves removed from their homes and placed in nursing facilities long before it is wanted or necessary. NSS provides Meals on Wheels services for an entire year, which is roughly the same cost as spending ten days in a nursing home or just one day in a hospital. The overall goal is to honor a “whole-life enhancement” philosophy by providing home delivered meals, congregate meals, transportation, pet food assistance, emergency response systems, fresh produce and nutrition education, information for referrals, and tools that help elderly peoples while allowing them to keep their independence.

With a network of more than 200 volunteers, corporate sponsors and loyal donors, NSS brings food and friendship to a population that is often overlooked, neglected, or simply forgotten. Meals are delivered daily, Monday-Friday, and NSS provides nearly 1,800 homebound elderly and disabled residents of Jefferson and Hardin counties with nutritious meals required for independent living. To qualify for home delivered meals, a person must be 60 years or older or a disabled adult. Other criteria include being unable to prepare meals due to a reason of illness, disability, or frailty. All meals served meet 1/3 of the required daily allowances (RDA) for older adults and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

“The funds from It’s Time Texas and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas are critical during this very uncertain time, as they support our home delivered meals program that offers much-needed nutrition and comfort to a population that is often overlooked, neglected, and simply forgotten. Your support of our mission truly ensures that the homebound elderly and disabled adults in our community can remain living independently, at home, but not alone.”

- Kayla White, Program Development Coordinator

The Major Impact


Delivering food as part of the Nutrition Services for Seniors programThe magnitude of the Collaborative Innovations for Community Health allows NSS to provide over 6,000 meals to homebound clients in critical need of life-saving food and friendship. The program focuses to reduce the isolation and hunger that often arises as a result of aging and limited mobility. Those enrolled in the Meals on Wheels program receive the required daily nutrition that is recommended for older adults. Home delivered meals not only ensure clients are staying healthy, but the daily visit by a Meals on Wheels delivery driver or volunteer offers critical human contact that is desperately needed among our aging population. The daily check in and friendly hello is often the highlight of a elderly persons day and is quite possible the only person they may see or speak to at all. It’s much more than just a meal.

The Heart


An interview with:

Pastor Robert D. Walker – Leader, Facilitator, Teacher
Aundrey Petry Sr. – Teacher, Volunteer

What does success look like for this project? “Success of this project looks like our community members with an increased credit score of 700 or better. Success looks like people having a savings account and a checking account. It looks like people no longer live paycheck to paycheck. It looks like a family that benefits from financial freedom.”
- Pastor Walker

Why is community important to you, and what do you love most about your community? “Community is all we have. The people that live near you and with you make up your community. For all the flaws of people, there are double the grace and help from people. Your community helps pull up water-soaked carpets after a hurricane. Your community sees the need for food and creates a food bank. Your community fills in the gaps when and where they see the need. What I love most about my community is the diversity of the residents. We have all aspects of people that live here. This community is truly a melting pot.”
- Ms. Petry

While doing your work, when did you have an “aha” moment? “I’ve had several ‘aha’ moments. I have been teaching financial education classes for over 20 years now. When people come up to me and say, ‘I was able to send my child to a STEM camp because I had the money.’ When people get sick and are able to pay off the medical bills without going into bankruptcy or choosing between bills and food. The ‘aha’ moment is every time people are able to make smart decisions and they see tangible results.”
- Pastor Walker

What does health equity mean to you?“Health equity means to me, in one word: FREEDOM. When you have health equity, it means you have the power to make smart decisions in all aspects of your life. It means your children will benefit from your smart choices. It means that even if a hurricane hits (figuratively or literally), you can continue to live your life and you will not be uprooted for too long. Health equity equals freedom, leading to peace in your life. There’s nothing better than peace!”
- Ms. Petry

The Heart


An interview with:

Kayla White, the Program Development Coordinator at Nutrition & Services for Seniors.
What are your hopes/wishes/wins that will bring joy to you at the close of this project?
Success is the continuation of our program well into the future and has many faces. It’s the tears in the eyes of people like Ms. Rubye, who is overjoyed when she receives a meal for not only herself, but her dog, Cody, so that she can afford to continue paying her bills without the worry of pet food expenses. It’s phone calls from people like Ms. Mary, who, for the first time in years, had a birthday celebration thanks to the drive-by parade her Meals on Wheels volunteer drivers put together for her during the pandemic when the future felt very uncertain. It’s the hundreds of notes, letters, and phone calls we receive weekly thanking us for meals, pet food, grocery bags, fresh produce, fans, blankets, holiday gifts, etc. Because without them, they would be without.
Why is community important to you and what do you love most about your community?
Southeast Texas is a community like no other. We stand on the shoulders of our community. Without out community, NSS doesn’t exist, for it was the individuals in our community that recognized a need for senior care services in our area and developed the program more than 38 years ago. Those we serve are retired school teachers, refinery workers, nurses...people we all once relied on in one way or another and it is our responsibility as a community to give back to those who have already given us so much.

While doing your work, can you think of a time you’ve had an “Aha” moment?

It’s common jargon amongst the Meals on Wheels stratosphere to say that the daily home delivered meals are “much more than just a meal” and that is a mantra that we live by as we see firsthand all the good our organization does for those in our community, beyond nutrition. Our most recent “aha” moment was when a volunteer meal delivery driver was handed a note by a Meals on Wheels client that he was being held hostage in his home and he needed help! Authorities were notified and it turned out that the client was in fact being held against his will. The client knew that NSS would be there that day to deliver his meals and he knew he could turn to us for life-saving help, further emphasizing to this client, NSS truly means, “much more than just a meal.”
What does health equity mean to you?
Health equity lies within the mission of our organization. It’s to provide innovative, effective programs that assist all older and disabled adults in leading quality lives while maintaining dignity and independence.

Quick Facts:


  • Iconium Missionary Baptist Church, located in Beaumont, Texas, was established in 1996.
  • Iconium Family Church has been teaching economic stability classes for adults for 24 years.
  • The course lasts eight weeks, offering access to financial resources, quality housing and food, and jobs that provide stable income.
  • The three teachers within the program have worked in finance for over 30 years and have an accounting background as well as a college education in finance and business.
  • The goal is to inform and provide the knowledge and support of changing one’s views on finances and how to become sustainable as an individual and as a family. Becoming debt-free and maintaining a budget with savings is something that is vital to a healthy life.
  • Provides resources and information that can be used instantaneously.
Pastor Walker, Iconium Family Church

The Major Impact


There are a number of social determinants the financial classes will support. People miss doctor appointments when they lack reliable transportation, children are exposed to environmental hazards like lead-based paint because families can’t afford to move to better neighborhoods, diets are poor, prescriptions go unfilled—financial status impacts your health.

The success of each participant in the economic stability class is determined by application of the student. The student will be given all the tools and knowledge to become economically stable. The way this will be evaluated is through a one-on-one sit down, pre-and post-consultations with their teacher to find out where they are financially (do they have a savings account, a checking account, credit card(s), etc.), and a pre- and post-class survey. The success of the class will be determined by the changes that have been made in the student’s life exactly one month after the eight-week course.

The Project


Iconium Missionary Baptist Church opened its classrooms to spread knowledge in the community though teaching classes on topics of financial literacy, bullying, crisis counseling, college readiness, and more. The audience the church serves are minorities, youth (13-18), poor, and working poor. This specific project focuses on economic stability for adults (19 and older) and works to lift people out of their current life challenge into a better situation for them and their immediate family.

For the past 24 years, this class has allowed members of the community access to resources essential to life, including financial resources, quality housing and food, and a job that provides a stable, living wage. Because of this class, students have increased their credit scores, purchased homes, created a savings and checking's account, and more.

The Major Impact


There are a number of social determinants the financial classes will support. People miss doctor appointments when they lack reliable transportation, children are exposed to environmental hazards like lead-based paint because families can’t afford to move to better neighborhoods, diets are poor, prescriptions go unfilled—financial status impacts your health.

The success of each participant in the economic stability class is determined by application of the student. The student will be given all the tools and knowledge to become economically stable. The way this will be evaluated is through a one-on-one sit down, pre-and post-consultations with their teacher to find out where they are financially (do they have a savings account, a checking account, credit card(s), etc.), and a pre- and post-class survey. The success of the class will be determined by the changes that have been made in the student’s life exactly one month after the eight-week course.

The Heart


An interview with:

Pastor Robert D. Walker – Leader, Facilitator, Teacher
Aundrey Petry Sr. – Teacher, Volunteer

What does success look like for this project? “Success of this project looks like our community members with an increased credit score of 700 or better. Success looks like people having a savings account and a checking account. It looks like people no longer live paycheck to paycheck. It looks like a family that benefits from financial freedom.”
- Pastor Walker

Why is community important to you, and what do you love most about your community? “Community is all we have. The people that live near you and with you make up your community. For all the flaws of people, there are double the grace and help from people. Your community helps pull up water-soaked carpets after a hurricane. Your community sees the need for food and creates a food bank. Your community fills in the gaps when and where they see the need. What I love most about my community is the diversity of the residents. We have all aspects of people that live here. This community is truly a melting pot.”
- Ms. Petry

While doing your work, when did you have an “aha” moment? “I’ve had several ‘aha’ moments. I have been teaching financial education classes for over 20 years now. When people come up to me and say, ‘I was able to send my child to a STEM camp because I had the money.’ When people get sick and are able to pay off the medical bills without going into bankruptcy or choosing between bills and food. The ‘aha’ moment is every time people are able to make smart decisions and they see tangible results.”
- Pastor Walker

What does health equity mean to you?“Health equity means to me, in one word: FREEDOM. When you have health equity, it means you have the power to make smart decisions in all aspects of your life. It means your children will benefit from your smart choices. It means that even if a hurricane hits (figuratively or literally), you can continue to live your life and you will not be uprooted for too long. Health equity equals freedom, leading to peace in your life. There’s nothing better than peace!”
- Ms. Petry

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