JOPLIN, Mo. — Federal grant funding will help make sure a local meal delivery program for the elderly stays on the road.

The Joplin City Council approved a Pass Through Grant of $46,000 for the Area Agency on Aging.

That will pay for a new refrigerated van that they use to take food to seniors throughout the region. The program’s fleet is aging and is coping with mechanical issues and other problems — so this will boost what their four trucks can currently handle.

“It actually supplements. We have some trucks that have custom freezer cabs on them. Those are aging rapidly – some are older than most of our cars. Um but with care and concern they’ve been able to last 11 – 12 years,” said Jennifer Shotwell, Area Agency on Aging CEO.

The program delivers about 5,000 frozen meals to homebound seniors in Joplin every month.