Yukon Mobile Meals earns powerful gift

Canadian County women’s philanthropic bestows quarterly HOPE Award

Yukon Mobile Meals’ representatives accept Power of 100 Canadian County’s fourth quarter HOPE Award from founding members Kim Baker, Tammy McKee, Anita Bishop, Tresa Smith, Nancy Campbell (presenting check), Kay Casper, and Andrea Griffin. Mobile Meals’ Director Joanne Oltmanns accepts the donation alongside board members Casey Barnett, Dee Dee Bos, Beverly Sparks, Donna Jones, Jason Beal, Chris Russell, and Ryan McClure. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

A powerful gift will help provide nutritious hot meals to Yukon’s homebound.

Members of the Power of 100 Canadian County have presented their quarterly HOPE Award to Yukon Mobile Meals, which serves elderly, disabled and convalescing Yukon residents.

Yukon Mobile Meals Director Joanne Oltmanns and the Mobile Meals’ board accepted the $17,926 gift on Nov. 7 from Power of 100 founding members.

The funds will be used to purchase a food warmer and other needed supplies for Mobile Meals’ kitchen inside the Dale Robertson Center, 1200 Lakeshore.

“We had to replace a freezer and a refrigerator and lost all the food that was in both of them,” Oltmanns explained. “So, just building back that food supply will be part of it. Now we can re-fill them.

“We can come up with one or two other things that will make it more efficient for us in the kitchen. We’re thankful for our kitchen, but there’s always a need for new equipment.”

For the past two years, Power of 100 Canadian County has raised and distributed funds to non-profit charities in Canadian County.

Founded in October 2020, these charitable women combine their resources to make a significant impact on local non-profits. The Canadian County group has nearly 200 members, who each agree to donate $100 quarterly.

Power of 100 Canadian County co-founder Tammy McKee announced the large monetary gift to Yukon Mobile Meals.

“Thank you for all of your hard work, your dedication and your commitment,” McKee said. “Joanne, thank you for all your selfless leadership and all the work you, your board members and your volunteers do.

“We see what you’re doing. We see the hard work and the generosity.”

Yukon Mayor Shelli Selby nominated Yukon Mobile Meals as the Power of 100 Canadian County’s fourth quarter HOPE Award recipient.

Yukon’s food-delivery program now serves weekday lunch meals to some 118 residents.

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, daily meal numbers increased from around 85 to 125.

“We were worried about feeding all those people,” said Casey Barnett, Yukon Mobile Meals’ board secretary. “People came out of the woodwork, when they heard Mobile Meals was staying open and operating, to help feed our recipients.

“It was pretty incredible.”

Although the Dale Robertson Center was closed to the public at the peak of the pandemic, Yukon Mobile Meals never missed a day delivering the weekday meals.

“We managed to get food to all of our people, and kept adding as needed,” Oltmanns pointed out.

Yukon Mobile Meals does more than deliver meals – its volunteer drivers also offer friendly smiles and welfare checks on recipients.

“Many of the people are so starved for affection and attention,” the longtime director added. “Our drivers go above and beyond.”

Other Yukon Mobile Meals’ board members are President Donna Jones, Treasurer Jason Beal, Dee Dee Bos, Beverly Sparks, Chris Russell, Donna Jung, Kyle Woodall, and Ryan McClure.

Yukon Mobile Meals’ Board Secretary Casey Barnett discusses how much the Power of 100 Canadian County’s $17,926 gift will help meal recipients. Barnett is Yukon Parks & Recreation’s assistant director. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

$167,026 IN SUPPORT

Power of 100’s mission is to bring positive, passionate, community-minded and generous women together to make a difference.

Since fall 2020, the Power of 100 Canadian County has presented $167,026 to nine Canadian County non-profits:

  • Compassionate Hands – $12,765
  • Yukon Sharing Ministry – $15,608
  • The Lord’s Harvest – $17,021
  • House of Healing – $17,822
  • VFW Post 382 Auxiliary – $18,000
  • Savannah Station – $22,064
  • El Reno Mobile Meals – $23,322
  • Youth and Family Services – $22,498
  • Yukon Mobile Meals – $17,926

“When we first started, we were going to be happy if we could give $5,000,” McKee noted. “It’s been just amazing.”

The Canadian County women’s group meets quarterly. Members’ contributions are pooled to create a significant quarterly gift.

Power of 100 members nominate charities, which must be a 501(c)3 in Canadian County. Names of all nominees and placed in a hopper, with three randomly selected to make presentations about their organizations at each quarterly meeting.

All members then vote on which non-profit will receive that quarter’s HOPE Award.

“Our goal is to keep growing,” McKee added. “When we started during the pandemic, we didn’t think we’d get to 50 (members) the first year.

“We had no idea the generosity that we would experience.”

Power of 100 Canadian County had 127 members within 10 days of being launched two years ago, co-founder Anita Bishop noted.

Canadian County has more than 200 non-profit charities. A charity must be at least two years old to be eligible for the HOPE Award.

“Our goal is to give money, but also to educate about the charities that are out there and to recruit volunteers for those charities,” Bishop said.

McKee is president and Bishop is secretary of Power of 100 Canadian County’s board of directors.

Other board members are Vice President Tresa Smith, Treasurer Nancy Campbell and Community Outreach Coordinator Kim Baker.

They are seeking sponsors for their quarterly events. Sponsorships include door prizes, food and monetary contributions.

For more information about becoming a member or sponsor, visit powerof100cc.org