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Three Service employees volunteering at a food bank with large packages of sweet potatoes
Information icon Jennifer Gilchrist, John Tupy and Heather Hitt get bags of sweet potatoes ready for distribution. Photo by Ken Warren, USFWS.

Florida Service staff helps Food Bank distribute goods to families

On Nov. 14, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff members volunteered to help the Treasure Coast Food Bank distribute food, toiletries, toys and other items to about 400 needy families in Fellsmere, Florida.

This was done in conjunction with the food bank’s monthly mobile pantry distribution program, where they deliver and distribute donated goods to needy families in the communities where they live.

Two women help to create care packages of toiletries for local food bank
Lindsay Nester (left) and Shana DiPalma prepare bags of toiletries. Photo by Ken Warren, USFWS.

The families lined up in their vehicles and then drove through a series of stations at Mesa Motocross Park where volunteers loaded up their vehicles with items ranging from canned goods to fresh sweet potatoes to hams to bottled water.

“All I can say is ‘Thank you!’ to the volunteers from the Fish and Wildlife Service out here today,” said Travis Myers, program Coordinator for the Treasure Coast Food Bank. “Without them and the other volunteers, this wouldn’t be such a smooth, efficient process.”

At this time of the year, although it’s a food bank, they get lots of donations of items for children like toys and stuffed animals.

A man collecting supplies for a care package
Brian Powell sets up a table with cookies. Photo by Ken Warren, USFWS.

Biologist Lindsay Nester, of the South Florida Ecological Services Office, who organized the office’s participation in the event, worked at the station where toys and toiletries were handed out. “This sounded like a great opportunity for us to give back a little bit to this community,” she said.

“Helping people feels good,” Lindsay added. “We met lots of people who were all so friendly and appreciative. That made it so much more meaningful.”


Ken Warren, Public Affairs Specialist, (772) 778-5498

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