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Gas prices impacting deliveries for Meals on Wheels

Volunteers deliver multiple trips a day, each averaging about 10 miles, which can quickly add up.

INDIANAPOLIS — The national average price of gas is now above $5 a gallon and hit $5.22 in Indiana Monday.

That's putting a strain on those who help deliver meals to people in need.

Meals on Wheels said many of its Indianapolis volunteers are cutting back on deliveries due to the price of gas. Right now, they have 400 volunteers that they depend on to deliver meals to more than 500 of their clients who can't get out on their own.

Volunteers deliver multiple trips a day, each averaging about 10 miles, which can quickly add up.

While they haven't lost any volunteer drivers yet, Barb Renshaw, of Meals on Wheels, said rising gas prices are causing concern for some of their drivers, and they are reducing the number of days they deliver and how many trips they make. 

"Thirty-six daily routes, even if you have five or six volunteers that aren't available on those days, or eight volunteers over the course of a week," Renshaw said.

The reduction in drivers is forcing the organization to rely more on paid drivers, which cuts into the nonprofit's limited funding. 

Renshaw adds that community members can donate gas cards to help volunteers with their deliveries since they do not get reimbursed for their mileage. 

They also are looking for more drivers. You can find more information on how to volunteer here.

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