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Providence community in Tallahassee takes food distribution door-to-door

Neighbors helping neighbors
Posted at 7:05 PM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 19:05:31-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — One Tallahassee neighborhood put its food pantry on wheels, delivering meals right to neighbors doorsteps.

Neighbors came together to feed one another in the Providence community, where neighbors stepped up after seeing the need.

After hearing countless stories about people unable to get to the nearest food distribution, Providence Neighborhood Association president Walter McDonald teamed up with Second Harvest of the Big Bend to make sure no one in his community would go hungry.

"Our neighborhood is a walking neighborhood and the model Second Harvest uses is a drive-thru," said McDonald.

Providence Neighborhood Association partnered with Second Harvest of the Big Bend and Pineview Elementary School to pack up boxes of food and deliver it to those in need.

Pineview is a distribution site but many say it's too far of a walk to get the food.

People who live in the area met at Pineview to load up cars with fresh produce and shelf stable food before delivering them around the community.

They made special deliveries, placed on about 300 doorsteps in Tallahassee's Providence neighborhood on Thursday.

"It made me feel good that somebody thought about me," said Pearl Osgoode, a resident of the Providence community.

Osgoode says life has been rough since the coronavirus hit.

"Just trying to keep my head above water," Osgoode said.

Many others are just like Osgoode, trying to stay afloat.

"There's so many of us out here struggling," Osgoode said. "Sometimes we don't know where our next meal is going to come from."

While some can take advantage of food distributions, others were left behind.

"It was community led," said Monique Ellsworth, the CEO of Second Harvest of the Big Bend. "Community leadership advocating for the neighborhood they live in and care so much about. They didn't come to us with just a problem, but also helped us envision a solution."

It is help neighbors in the area appreciate.

"We've had parents to come to us on a consistent basis to say they're in need," said Carmen Conners, the principal at Pineview Elementary. "I just didn't realize that need was so great until now."

"I'm very thankful for everything people been doing for us," said Osgoode.

"So many people out here don't have anything," said Osgoode. "Especially kids."

"They're excited and so happy," McDonald said. "Even today, when we dropped off the meals, they were so excited and received the food greatly."

The plan is to do these doorstep deliveries regularly, but people are also encouraged to reach out if they're in need of some help.