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Community partners help in aiding residents amid Coronavirus Pandemic

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Everett City Councilor Stephanie Martins (left) volunteers in the community-wide effort to extend aid to residents during the coronavirus outbreak. (Photo by Joseph Prezioso)

By Lorenzo Recupero

When access to food and other necessities is thwarted by circumstance and emergency, it’s community and nonprofit organizations that come through in toughest times.

In response to Coronavirus, grocery stores across the state have started to take preventative measures for shopping, implementing changes that include, altered opening and closing hours, purchase limits on various items, and special times for seniors only to shop.

The mad dash to supermarkets caused by widespread panic over emergency measures mandated by the state has left shelves bare and families unable to provide for their homes.

Everett based organizations and businesses, including but not limited to, The Grace Food Pantry, The Elliot Family Resource Center, and Encore Boston Harbor have helped alleviate the burden for thousands in the city in recent days.

Donations to the Everett public from local organizations has ranged from thousands of pounds of fresh fruits & veggies, fresh and nonperishable meals, to toys and hygiene products, such as hand sanitizers, diapers and laundry soap.

Other local businesses have donated trucks and employees to aid in shipment of supplies.

Thousands of pounds of food waiting to be handed out to Everett residents. (Photo by Joseph Prezioso)

 

Irene Cardillo, the Director of the Everett Grace Food Pantry, which works in conjunction with the Greater Boston Food Bank, has helped serve meals to Everett residents weekly for the last 5 years and she says the community has banded together and the amounts of food available for residents in need is cause to feel good during nervous times.

“In working with the Greater Boston Food Bank and other local business, we have food available for those in need 7 days a week,” said Cardillo. “Food and volunteers have not been an issue,” said Cardillo, Who stated many residents, business owners and City officials have all volunteered their time.

Food and other supplies being served up at The Elliot Family Resource Center. (Photo by Joseph Prezioso)

 

The “overwhelming” show of strength and support from all involved is something Cardillo says Everett should be most grateful for, even more so during trying times.

“My gratitude for the entire city starts from the mayor on down. There’s not an agency in the city that hasn’t offered support. Everyone has worked so hard and gracefully together, I’m really speechless,” said Cardillo.

The Everett Grace Food Pantry and Outreach Center, currently located at 50 Church street in Everett, can be reached at 617-799-9440 or on Facebook for a calendar of events. The Elliot Family Resource Center, located at 548 Broadway in Everett, can be reached at 781-581-4750, on Facebook or online at http://www.eliotchs.org

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