CHAMPSS program adds locations
Since 2008, the CHAMPSS (Choosing Healthy Appetizing Meal Plan Solutions for Seniors) program has offered dining opportunities for adults 60 years and older. Through CHAMPSS, participants can enjoy a healthy breakfast, lunch or dinner at their convenience from participating locations.
The program has grown to include eight Hy-Vee grocery stores in Johnson County with meals served in the dining area.
CHAMPSS expanded to IHOP restaurants in July 2022. There currently are three participating IHOP locations in Olathe, Overland Park and Shawnee. Participants can order from dietitian- approved menus that include an entrée, fruit, vegetable, grain and dairy.
More than 2,400 individuals now participate in the CHAMPSS program. They enjoy the flexibility offered through the program since sites are open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. Many participants report positive outcomes, including eating healthier and increasing the number of fruits and vegetables consumed.
“In addition to giving clients access to hot and nutritious meals, the CHAMPSS program provides socialization opportunities for older adults. One of our goals is to combat isolation, and eating a meal with others is a great way to accomplish that,” said Nutrition Program Manager Stephany Ikpe.
CHAMPSS originated in Johnson County and has been replicated in other cities and states. The program is administered by the Johnson County Area Agency on Aging within the Department of Aging and Human Services. The program is supported by federal funds through the Older Americans Act and by donations. The suggested donation is $4 per meal. No one is denied a meal if they are unable to donate.