Health, what a wonderfully multifaceted word. It can call to mind a host of concepts. Some think of running marathons and doing yoga, and others are reminded of their yearly physical. For others the word may conjure massages or taking vitamins and medications. The truth is health is all these things. According to the World Health Organization, “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Thus, if we accept this definition, becoming the “Healthiest Nation in One Generation” is a tall order.
It may not be surprising that when we at God’s Love consider the meaning of health, we immediately turn to nutrition; and we do not see a way toward this generational goal without incorporating food and nutrition in the mechanism. The human body is an intricate and beautiful piece of machinery. You put something in your mouth and chew it and then our astounding system breaks that fuel down into chemicals, vitamins and molecules that are used for fuel, medicine and storage for use by the body later. It is easy to take this system for granted, though it is the most basic process of subsistence and the foundation for the possession of health.
At God’s Love, we are intimately familiar with the power of this process to change lives. And it is not that food and nutrition address only one facet of health, rather they address the physical, mental and social dimensions of well-being.
Each one of our meals is individually tailored to meet the unique needs of our clients. We use only the freshest ingredients, and our whole program is designed to help our clients be as physically healthy as they can be for as long as possible. The right food helps our clients take their medications without side effects, helping those with mental and physical disorders remain adherent to their prescriptions. Every day our clients struggle with malnutrition, hunger, illness and isolation. When they contact God’s Love, they find a community of volunteers, staff and Board members, who care deeply about them. The contact that we foster with our clients, whether it be through meal deliveries, on-call nutrition counseling, our follow-up every six months, or connection to other services through our 200 linkage agreements, creates a safety net helping individuals to not just survive, but thrive, even while living with a serious illness.
Our program makes a difference in the multidimensional health of our clients, according to our client survey results:
- 85% of clients report that our services help them live more independently
- 89% report that the food they receive from God’s Love helps them eat more nutritiously than they would otherwise
- 87% report reduced household food anxiety as a result of our program
- 77% report reduced household financial anxiety as a result of our program
- 69% report our service helps them manage their medical treatment more effectively
- 77% report an increased knowledge of nutrition
God’s Love is dedicated to cooking and delivering the individually-tailored meals and nutrition counseling our clients require at a time in their lives when they need it most. And we do this – free of charge – with dignity, respect and compassion. With the help of our community, we believe we are changing food culture and creating a more robust definition of health every day.