As lots of them discovered themselves struggling to make ends meet, 2009 CNN Hero Doc Hendley, a former bartender, needed to do one thing to assist.
Hendley and his group of volunteers began placing collectively care packages in his hometown of Boone, North Carolina. The group distributes the packages, that are full of 40 meals and different family requirements, to laid off restaurant staff all through the state.
“The problem is that revenue will still struggle for a lot of these places and many workers will still be out of the job since businesses will be trying to run extra lean,” Hendley stated. “A lot of those workers are living paycheck to paycheck, or trying to pay their way through school, or a single mom trying to take care of kids.”
The packing containers embrace contemporary fruit and veggies, espresso, contemporary baked bread, and bathroom paper, amongst different meals and hygiene gadgets. Hendley stated their hope is to not solely assist individuals survive, but additionally to assist them thrive throughout this time of uncertainly.
Since March, his group has already given out greater than 72,000 meals.
“These boxes have become really something that our community is really looking forward to each week,” Hendley stated. “I saw a single mama come and pick up a box for her and her kids. And literally when she opened it up, she just started crying.”
Wine to Water has additionally reorganized its work internationally, filling a vital hole in entry and training for individuals in distant areas the place clear, operating water is scarce. The group is working in Tanzania, the Dominican Republic, Colombia, Kenya, and Nepal.
“We were able to shift very quickly from our focus, which is generally on water and sanitation, and really focus on specifically hygiene related to hand washing and other things that would help reduce the spread of coronavirus,” Hendley stated.
When the epidemic broke out, the group’s water filter factories around the globe started mass producing moveable hand washing stations, that are positioned in closely trafficked areas reminiscent of police stations, well being care clinics, and bigger hospitals.
Wine to Water’s worldwide Covid-19 response packages have up to now reached greater than 32,000 individuals.
“It’s been so inspiring to see how many people have gotten behind and supported our programs around the world,” Hendley stated. “When the sun does come out after the storm’s over, I think that we as a people are going to come through this stronger and more together than we’ve ever been.”