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Foodnet Meals on Wheels





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January 2017


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We bring fresh hot meals to neighbors who have difficulty shopping and preparing meals.

Meals on Wheels

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Stephen Griffin to Retire from Foodnet Meals on Wheels


Foodnet Meals on Wheels announces the up-coming retirement of founding Executive Director Stephen Griffin.  After thirty years in the position Griffin plans to step down on December 31, 2016

Griffin, a native of the Syracuse area, graduated from Cornell in 1976 and immediately started to apply his skills, talents, and knowledge to what is now called “food security” for older adults in Tompkins County.  Beginning his work with the Salvation Army’s nutrition for the elderly program Griffin drew attention to the unmet nutritional and health needs of County seniors.  Following extensive community conversations and planning Foodnet was born in 1986.  Griffin was instrumental in these efforts and was named to lead the new agency.

Since those early days Foodnet Meals on Wheels, under Griffin’s visionary leadership, has continued to meet the nutritional needs of County older adults, not only through home delivered meals, but also through meals at four congregate nutrition sites – Groton, Titus Towers in Ithaca, Lansing, and Trumansburg.

As important as the meals are to the well being of County seniors, however, Foodnet under Griffin’s tutelage has become more than just a meal.  The program is unique in senior services because it sends trained drivers out to all corners of the County to make personal contact five days a week with people who might otherwise not speak with another person all day.  For many seniors Foodnet is the difference between being able to remain in their own homes versus more institutional alternatives. 

Beyond his direct work with Foodnet Griffin has been involved with and often held leadership roles in many professional organizations at the local, state, and national level including New York Association of Nutrition and Aging Services, Meals on Wheels New York, Meals on Wheels America, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

In his community work Griffin has been involved with a wide variety of local organizations over his career, but his involvement with United Way of Tompkins County stands out.   United Way Executive Director James Brown recently said, “Steve Griffin represents the highest form of community leadership through service.  If an activity will benefit the greater community, Steve will lead, facilitate and participate.  Steve’s departure will leave a void in this community.  It will also leave a legacy of service, caring, and generosity that has made this community stronger and a better place for all.”

In early 2017 Griffin will be relocating to Florida to pursue new opportunities.  The Foodnet Board will be hosting a retirement reception for Griffin on Thursday, November 17th from 4:30 – 7:00 pm.  The event will take place in Dodds Hall, First Presbyterian Church, 315 North Cayuga Street, Ithaca.  All are welcome to attend to wish Griffin well.  For more information, contact the Foodnet Office at (607) 266-9553.


Board of Directors






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Our Mission

Foodnet Meals on Wheels mission is to provide meals and other nutrition services that promote dignity, well being and independence for older adults and other persons in need in Tompkins County.

Our Vision

We envision a Tompkins County community in which senior hunger is eliminated, supportive services are readily accessible, and our neighbors enjoy independence without isolation.

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Go to Foodnet Meals on Wheels on Facebook to see our latest photos and announcements

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Our Beginnings

In Ithaca, delivery of hot meals to shut-ins was started in 1967 by a volunteer group of local church women. In 1974, a congregate meal program called the Tompkins County Nutrition Program for the Elderly was established, authorized under the Older Americans Act and funded through the Tompkins County Office for the Aging. Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County and The Salvation Army operated the program in the early years. The program grew and became an independent non-profit organization named Foodnet in 1987; organized by a group of concerned citizens to provide congregate and home delivered meals and to promote independent living. The local Meals on Wheels program was consolidated under Foodnet Meals on Wheels in December 2000.

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Nutrition - A Critical Service                                  

Adequate nutrition is essential for healthy aging, the prevention or delay of chronic disease and disease-related disabilities, and for improved quality of life. Yet poor nutrition is a major problem for many older adults. Almost 90 per cent have a nutrition-related chronic disease or condition such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, or osteoporosis. About 40 per cent of community dwelling older adults have inadequate food and nutrient intake, which affects their health and ability to function independently.

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Foodnet Meals on Wheels mission is to meet these needs.

Foodnet Meals on Wheels provides nutrition services to older adults throughout Tompkins County. Meals in community centers improve participants' health and prevent more costly interventions. Meals on Wheels enable older adults to avoid or delay costly institutionalization and allow them to stay in their homes or communities. Other services include nutrition screening, assessment, education, and nutrition counseling. The purposes of these programs are to improve health, improve dietary intakes, offer participants opportunities to form new friendships, encourage informal support systems, and link participants to other health and supportive services.


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There are many ways you can help!


  DonateNow  Make a secure donation online.

Make a secure donation using Pay Pal


More easy ways to support Foodnet Meals on Wheels:

Donate your used car

through Meals on Wheels Association of America


1 877 CARS 4 US

Donate your used car through Donation Line


Mail-in Donation Form


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Foodnet Meals on Wheels is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation funded by the New York State and Tompkins County Offices for the Aging, U.S. Administration on Aging, voluntary contributions from participants, and charitable gifts from individuals, businesses and foundations.

We are a member of Meals On Wheels America.

2014 Audited Financial Statements

2014 IRS Form 990

A copy of our most recent annual report is available by request or through the office of the Attorney General, Charities Bureau, 120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271

Search by our name or NY Registration # 04 24 76:

Nutrition for the Elderly in Tompkins County, Inc. dba Foodnet Meals on Wheels

Read a comprehensive report and profile of Foodnet Meals on Wheels at GuideStar, the leading source of information on U.S. nonprofit organizations.



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Send mail to info@foodnet.org with any questions or comments.
Last modified: December 14, 2016