The Older Americans Congregate Nutrition Program and the Home-Delivered Nutrition Program provide nutritious meals in a variety of group settings, such as senior centers, and faith-based settings, as well as in the homes of isolated older adults. These nutrition programs also provide a range of related services through home-delivered meal and congregate meal providers. Additional nutrition services include nutrition screening, assessment, education and counseling. Nutrition services also provide an important link to other supportive in-home and community-based services.
The purpose of the Older Americans Act (OAA) Nutrition Program is to:
Programs target adults age 60 and older who are in greatest social and economic need, with particular attention to:
The Congregate Nutrition Program provides meals and related nutrition services in congregate (group) settings, which help to keep older Americans healthy and prevent the need for costlier medical interventions. In addition to serving healthy meals, the program presents opportunities for social engagement, information on healthy aging, and meaningful volunteer roles, all of which contribute to an older individual's overall health and well-being.
The Home-Delivered Nutrition Services Program provides meals and related nutrition services for older individuals who are homebound. The Home-Delivered Nutrition program serves homebound, or isolated individuals who are age 60 and over, and in some cases, their caregivers, spouses, and/or persons with disabilities. To be considered homebound, the individual is unable to leave home to attend regular social activities such as a congregate nutrition site; needs escort assistance to attend medical appointments; is without access to adequate nutrition and for whom transportation to a congregate site is unfeasible; is unable to prepare meals and has no one available to prepare meals. This program provides much more than food. It provides a nutritious meal plus a safety check, and sometimes the only opportunity for face-to-face contact an individual has for that day.