"The Kitchen" Takes A Hit

"The Kitchen" has been a local non-profit organization serving the Wichita Falls senior community for the last 46 years. Opened in 1967, it aims to meet the nutritional requirements of those in need. However, beginning March 1, federal funding for senior nutrition has been reduced by budget cuts known as sequestration.

Executive Director Jackie Hamm states, "sequestration is going to affect us… we received notice that the funds have not been distributed to the state level yet."

The White House estimated the cuts would mean 4 million fewer meals for seniors this year. The delay of these funds will have the greatest impact on the "Meals on Wheels" program which delivers 750-800 meals to homebound seniors on the daily. The Kitchen's goal is to not turn anyone away who needs food.

Seniors say this organizations existence is very important to them and hopes the food services will continue at the same rate.

"The Kitchen you know… like I said it's the food, the people are nice and the people that run it they treat you right" says Tina Ramos.

Jackie McLaughlin who has been coming to "The Kitchen" for the past 8 years says "just meeting other people and just being around them for a little while that really makes your day in life and it keeps people I think from depression."

Despite government funds decreasing, "The Kitchen" is maintaining constant contact with the legislature to make sure they are fully aware of what is going on. Jackie hopes the organization will be able to keep up with the number of seniors receiving aid and continue serving the Wichita Falls community.

Cynthia Kobayashi, Newschannel Six.