Santa Monica-based Meals On Wheels West has been awarded an $18,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation through the Meals On Wheels Association of America.

The grant will fund the local organization’s Outreach Project, which aims to identify and serve over 1,200 seniors and disabled clients, and prepare the agency for the upcoming wave of aging “baby boomers.”

The Meals On Wheels West project is intended to use proven business marketing techniques to locate isolated seniors and help ensure the agency’s sustainability by fostering long-term growth, Meals on Wheels officials said.

“We need to remain viable and fortify for when the ‘boomers’ get here,” Meals On Wheels West President and CEO RoseMary Regalbuto said. “This will include looking at new menu options and service delivery models to be sure we can suit their specific needs.”

The Walmart Foundation first became a partner of Meals On Wheels Association of America in 2008 with a donation of $750,000. In late 2009, the foundation donated an additional $2.2 million to help 147 member programs. This year Walmart awarded $5 million in impact grants to more than 100 local Meals On Wheels agencies.

Research sponsored by the Meals On Wheels association reveals that more than six million seniors in America face the threat of hunger.

“The Walmart Foundation continues to step up to the plate in the fight against senior hunger,” said Enid Borden, president and CEO of MOWAA. “We can’t thank the Walmart Foundation enough for being such a powerful partner in our mission to end senior hunger in America by the year 2020.”

Margaret McKenna, president of the Walmart Foundation, said, “We know that seniors are among those hardest hit by hunger in this country. Many are homebound, and rely on neighbors and community volunteer programs like Meals On Wheels to help put food on the table.

“Walmart is proud to support the charitable causes that are important to customers and associates in their own neighborhoods.”