COLUMBIA — Driving around the north side of Columbia with directions leading her from house to house, Deborah Booker makes her way through town, delivering food for Meals on Wheels. Booker, 71, has been a volunteer for the program for eight years.
The retired equestrian teacher, who lives north of Columbia on her 5 acres of land where she tends to her horses and ponies, volunteers to drive meals to people at least once a week. On a drizzly Friday afternoon in late October, Booker had five locations for deliveries. She knocked on doors, and with a quick exchange of greetings, Booker passed along the meals to their recipients and went on her way.
“You’re paying back the community that’s helped you,” Booker said.
As a former teacher, Booker explains the philosophy “each one, teach one.” If people extend their hands to help someone out, then people who have received help have the chance to extend their hand, to yet another person.
“Because they helped you, you are now able to help another," Booker said.