How We Work

Meals on Wheels is one of the most recognizable charities in America. Everyone has an idea of what it does and for whom. However, each Meals on Wheels organization is an independent member of Meals on Wheels America in order to best serve its community.

Some Meals on Wheels are small grassroots organizations, dependent upon volunteers to make the deliveries to tens of seniors in a small geographic area. This model would simply not work for Meals on Wheels Chicago with a geographic area of more than 250 square miles and a vast client base of seniors and people with disabilities who depend on us for daily sustenance.

To meet this enormous need, Meals on Wheels Chicago partners with the City of Chicago’s Department of Family and Support Services and the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities to provide intake and case management. Open Kitchens prepares the food and hires professional drivers to deliver it in specially constructed trucks that keep the food at the appropriate temperature.

Our public-private partnership with the City of Chicago means that together we provide more than 2.4 million meals to Chicago’s homebound neighbors each year.  This highly efficient partnership allows us to keep our overhead and staff costs low so the maximum amount of public, corporate, and foundation support can reach those most in need.

Please contact Meals on Wheels Chicago Executive Director, David Tabak, at if you have any questions.