MAKING AN IMPACT: Woman dedicates retired life to Austin nonprofit

Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 6:25 AM CDT
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AUSTIN, Minn. (KTTC) – Every week for the last 25 years, Rosalie Seltz hand-delivers nutritious food to seniors and people with physical challenges.

“It’s just the right thing to do.”

Rosalie Seltz, retired teacher, Hot Meals on Wheels of Austin Volunteer

She’s just one of the 100 dedicated volunteers for Hot Meals on Wheels of Austin, selflessly giving their time, mileage, and kindness.

“When we first started, my husband and I did it together,” Rosalie Seltz, a Retired Teacher and Volunteer with Hot Meals on Wheels of Austin said. “We’ve always enjoyed Austin, people are very friendly.”

Beyond delivering daily lunches, Rosie and others provide contact, social interaction, and peace of mind to the individuals they serve and their families. Not to mention, Seltz is doing this at 93-years-old.

Seltz added, “It’s kind of good to feel that I’m helping in some way.”

Lending a helping hand is in Seltz’s DNA. The Winona native was an English teacher at Austin High School for nearly half a century.

“I’ve always been extremely grateful for the good students that I had,” Seltz said.

She also had to raise a family.

“I have four children: a daughter who was a former teacher, three sons who are all in hospital work, 10 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren, so I’ve been very blessed,” Seltz said.

The nonprofit has been around for 50 years. It currently serves about 90 individuals in Austin, delivering more than 1,500 meals each year.

A $20 donation pays for one week’s worth of meals, $88 overs one month of daily lunches, and $1,000 feeds one client for a full year.

“This is a way for them to be able to function more independently.”

Brian Johnson, President of Hot Meals on Wheels of Austin

The food is professionally prepared by Sacred Heart Care Center and Mayo Clinic Health System of Austin, and delivered to homes all across the city five days a week.

“We couldn’t function without all of the people that volunteer every day or every week throughout the year,” Brian Johnson, President of Hot Meals on Wheels of Austin said.

Seltz added, “It isn’t difficult. It certainly doesn’t take a lot of time.”

Showing up for this critical organization, just like Seltz, is a great way to make a huge impact in a short amount of time.

“She’s showing that you’re never too old to do volunteer work like that, you’re never too old to care about people in your community,” Johnson said.

Any individual, family, or group can volunteer once a month, once a week, or substitute as needed. It takes about one or two hours of time per session.

For more information about donating or getting involved, click here.

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