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Cape Caring Center receives truckload of food for families in need

By Staff | Apr 23, 2020

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office and one of its popular Deputy Dogs, Bosco, paid a visit to the Cape Coral Caring Center on Thursday, with a truckload full of macaroni and cheese packages, as well as peanut butter and jelly, to distribute to families in need.

The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented demand for food and the Cape Coral Caring Center is in need of donations like the one which arrived Thursday to the pantry. The food is placed in bags and into vehicles for people so that contact is limited.

“I have just shed many, many tears over all of this,” Cape Coral Caring Center Executive Director Julie Ferguson said. “We have so many people that come to us with so much need and so much loss.”

With honorary lieutenant Bosco, a 7-pound Havapoo-Poo, watching, members of the Sheriff’s Office, Lee County Commissioner Ray Sandelli and state representative candidate Mike Giallombardo formed a line and unloaded the food into the Cape Coral Caring Center.

“You get a feel for the stress and you have so much empathy for those in need,” Sandelli said. “This is a testament to how great the community support is.”

The generous gift was generated from a conversation between Giallombardo and Ferguson, who was explaining the need. Three days later, through a donation from Costco and Restaurant Depot and the help of the Sheriff’s Office and Deputy Dogs, the food arrived.

“We didn’t know it was going to be like this, but I knew in my heart this was a very generous community,” Ferguson said. “I am just so overwhelmed by all of this generosity.”

Approximately 50 people a day come to the Caring Center for packages of food or assistance to pay electric and water utility bills.

The mission of the Deputy Dogs “Call to Duty to Bust COVID-19” program is to provide safety tips for the community to follow during the pandemic, using posters and other artwork supplied by residents. The broader Deputy Dogs Pets on Patrol program is a community engagement initiative to encourage residents to report any suspicious activity or possible animal abuse.