At the Pop the Cause event held at Rockport Harbor June 26, the MCH Meals on Wheels program was selected to receive the $100,000 award.

MCH Meals on Wheels delivers more than 30,000 meals a year to homebound seniors and people with disabilities in Knox County.

“MCH is tremendously grateful to Bettina Doulton of Cellardoor Winery and Lani Stiles of Megunticook Market for this marvelous gift,” said Lee Karker, executive director of MCH, which runs the Meals on Wheels program for Knox County. “We are also grateful to the many community members who supported and voted for Meals on Wheels.”

MCH plans to use the bulk of this gift — $80,000 — toward a project to upgrade and expand the kitchen facilities at the Methodist Conference Home in Rockland where meals are prepared and sent out. The current kitchen at the Methodist Home has cramped work space, lacks sufficient food storage, and is difficult for volunteer Meals on Wheels drivers to access.

During the past three years the demand for Meals on Wheels has increased by more than 25 percent. As the population of Knox County (one of the oldest counties in the oldest state in the country) continues to age, the demand will only continue to rise.

“The Pop the Cause gift will provide some initial funding for the kitchen upgrade which will help Meals on Wheels better serve the growing population of seniors in Knox County," Karker said.

Pop the Cause, sponsored by Cellardoor Winery and Megunticook Market, in a new twist this year, selected four not-for-profit organizations — United Mid Coast Charities, Coastal Opportunities, Mid Coast Hospitality House and MCH Meals on Wheels — to be the beneficiaries of the event. Each nonprofit was given $20,000 and one nonprofit was chosen by popular vote, conducted online and in the community, to win $100,000.

Pop for Change, a volunteer involvement initiative that was part of this year’s event, turned out more than 500 volunteers to assist local non-profits.

“In addition to the monetary award, Meals on Wheels gained a number of new volunteers whose commitment continues beyond this event,” said Karker.