Perry Lutheran Homes to Host Fourth “Meals from the Heartland” Event

Perry Lutheran Homes is looking for another 280 volunteers to reach the whopping 100,000 total meal packs complete mark on May 1, 2019. The meal packing event will take place on Wednesday, May 1, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Perry Lutheran Homes’ Willis Campus located at 2323 Willis Ave, Perry, IA. This year will mark final year packaging another 30,000 meals in one day for a combined four-year total of over 100,000 meal packs complete helping over 600,000 undernourished people in need across the US and in third world countries.

 “Our residents, staff and community members really look forward to this event every year. Nearly 300 people gather together of differing ages, abilities, cultures and backgrounds to serve others in need. It’s simply an amazing representation of what it means to be a community united for the good of others and is an extension of our mission to Serve Christ by Serving Others,” says Melissa Gannon, Chief Operating Officer and Administrator at Perry Lutheran Homes.

Forty volunteers are needed each hour for seven shifts throughout the day. Accommodations can be made for any volunteer needing to sit during their shift. In addition to needing volunteers to package meals, Perry Lutheran Homes welcomes monetary donations to help cover the $6,100 cost of the food content for the packaged meals. Food content costs are $0.20 per meal. Interested volunteers can sign-up for a shift by calling or emailing Carsin Olson at the Perry Lutheran Homes at 515-465-5342 or

Although this marks the last year of Meals from the Heartland, Perry Lutheran Homes is making plans to continue this annual event with volunteers and partners invited to join them again next year, but with a shift of focus from third world countries to local Perry ‘Invisible Elders’ in need of help.  Look for more information about this more locally focused effort in 2020!

Perry Lutheran Homes will also highlight their recent intergenerational eldercare work in Jacmel, Haiti. Eldercare is a new concept for the people of Haiti; however, elders are among the nations most vulnerable as extreme poverty and disability often force elders to living on the streets dependent upon the kindness of strangers for food or water to survive.

“Our recent work in Haiti has revealed a great need to help the ‘Invisible Elders’ both in Haiti and in our own communities. Elders are tucked away behind walls. We don’t hear or see their needs, but they are indeed there. It is our responsibility to find, help and serve our invisible elders so they aren’t hungry, afraid, alone or forgotten,” states Rev. Max Phillips, Chief Executive Officer at Perry Lutheran Homes.

Perry Lutheran Homes residents and tenants at both Willis campus and Spring Valley campus lead very active and purposeful lives. Volunteers will have a chance to learn about other mission projects that have global impacts taking place right here in Perry. Those interested in taking a tour of Perry Lutheran Home’s award-winning memory care communities and/or Acorns & Oaks intergenerational daycare are also encouraged to stick around after their meal packing shift to do so.

Sign up today to volunteer to package meals or to make a monetary donation for this amazing event! Please contact Carsin Olson at the Perry Lutheran Homes today: 515-465-5342 or