Doctors, nurses, First Responders, Retail and Grocery store employees, and so many more essential workers people are showing up each day, amid the COVID-19 crisis, risking their safety in order to help others in the community. Of course, while so many unsung heroes are out there, tales of people arguing over the lack of supplies, finger pointing regarding a lack of proper social distancing, and other negative topics have become all too common.
However, Glades and Hendry County residents are working hard to spread random acts of kindness to help those in the front lines or those less fortunate. From gathering and delivering food and supplies for those who are home bound, to providing free bread and baked goods for those in need, to working together to sew and donate protective masks, and even making sure that our local Postal workers have much needed disinfectant supplies, there seems to be much more hope and goodness than despair.
The Hendry County Aktion Club has been collecting bread and baked goods, and delivering them to LaBelle Veterans Memorial Park nearly every day (except Mondays), to give away free to anyone who needs them.
“Maybe the community doesn’t know. I Mary Pringle have been doing the community donation for about 12 years, It started with my daughter Kaitlyn needing a community service project for Girl Scouts. We picked up every night and delivered to Cape Coral soup kitchen for many many years before she went to school. We moved to LaBelle and my friend Rose Adams took over the Cape Coral drop. It came time to change up for a few reasons, we started bringing out to LaBelle a year ago. We have dropped at the church where meals are made here in LaBelle. We dropped at United Way on Wed. and the Senior Center Fri. Each Thursday we were at the Kiwanis parking lot… Now places are closed. We wake up and go to Publix 6 a.m. in Cape Coral, one store which is helping the community of LaBelle because they chose to. We do this on our own time, our own money because we choose to. Trust me 12 years ago we had pies, cupcakes, etc. in excess it was overwhelming. BUT it lasted only so long; it is perishable goods. Take what you can eat until you can come back. Wasting food because you can not eat too much in one or two days isn’t helping the community to have the product spoil in your home. Take what you need, we will be back, we have done this many years. The only day we may not be here is a Monday or Tuesday which is because we don’t always have staff to make the trip. Trust me if there is free bread, we have staff, it will be in LaBelle. BE KIND…it is the one thing no one can close down.. I can not have my children or staff in harms way we are risking a lot as it is to offer this to this community. Please BE KIND,” said Mary Pringle, Director of the Hendry County Aktion Club.
Social media posts were circulating in groups based everywhere from LaBelle, Muse, Felda, to Clewiston, Harlem, Pioneer, and Montura communities, like this one: “You guys, if you get mail at your Physical Address, please don’t forget about your Mail Carriers. They handle mail by God knows who touched it, licked it closed, sneezed on it, etc.. If you have any extra hand Sanitizers, or any other items you may think that would be helpful, leave it in your box for them. They too are at the forefront delivering your Bills and packages and we need to show them how much we Appreciate them. This has been a PSA…Thank You!!”
As these posts were shared and reshaped the movement gained popularity quickly, promoting responses from the postal workers thanking everyone for their kindness and generosity. Some commented along their routes that it not only put a smile on their faces, but it really helped as they had worked such long shifts throughout the week, they hadn’t made it to the stores in time to get bleach, Lysol wipes, hand sanitizer, etc. before it sold out.
“Those of you who have left stuff in mail boxes for your mail carrier, THANK YOU!!! From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Truly amazing to see all of my coworkers come in with smiles on their faces because they got hand sanitizer or toilet paper… gift cards… it’s truly amazing. I haven’t been in LaBelle but for a couple of years now, and it’s so amazing to be a part of such an awesome little town! It may seem stupid to some of you, but some of the carriers have new born babies at home, kids or an elderly family member. So to be taken care of we while we are on the job is truly a blessing. Thank you, sincerely everyone at your Labelle Post Office!!” wrote Amy Wells.
We are certainly living in strange and stressful times, and we have a a responsibility to tell you about the impact and current events surrounding this pandemic. But these good deeds and acts of kindness are important, too.