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Every day, thousands of people wonder how they will scrounge up their next meal, many of them are our neighbors right here in Lake County! In our very own backyard, over 45,000 residents sweat daily over putting food on their tables.
For the first time, Lake Cares Food Pantry is managing the “Empty Bowls” event in hopes of shining a light on this increasingly heartbreaking secret that many of the people we see every day are facing.
We would love for you to join us on Thursday, February 8th from 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm at Wooten Park in Tavares! For $10 you get to enjoy 2 soups created by local eateries, bread, bottled water, and a bowl to use, which doubles as a reminder of the regions daily epidemic of empty bowls.
We are so very thankful for all of the individuals and organizations who hold food collection drives leading into the holiday season. We have had many inquiries as to what else can people do to help us and our clients get through the season. Yes without a doubt, food is very important, but so are the personal needs every person has. Items such as soap, shampoo, toothpaste and toothbrushes, deodorant and toilet paper. The list goes on, just look around your house, pay attention to your everyday routines and you'll soon realize what our clients need as well.
The partnership between Lake Cares and the Lake Concert Band under the direction of John Landers offers a free holiday concert. The concert is held at the Mount Dora Community Building at 520 N. Baker St. on December 14th from 7-9 pm. This concert brings the songs of Christmas along with Broadway and classical selections to listeners. A monetary donation will be accepted during the show.
Emergency Food: Hurricane Irma brought more than 115 families to Lake Cares immediately after the hurricane for a onetime emergency food dispersion and this number is expected to increase from the aftermath of Hurricane Maria’s devastation and families moving to Lake County. Second Harvest Food Bank delivered a truckload of food to the Habitat for Humanity Resale shop in Eustis which was distributed to over 300 families and the Plant City Rotary and Star Distribution Systems delivered a semi truck full of 25,000 pounds of nonperishables for Lake County residents.
It is with the continued support and help from all of the communities of Lake County that enables Lake Cares to fulfill our mission statement. “Feed the Body, Educate the Mind and Lift the Spirit of All Individuals.” Thank you for helping us with our mission.
Shop with a Cop: Every year the Mount Dora Police Department works with counselors from the Mount Dora schools to determine children in need during the holidays. They shop with a police office at the Mount Dora Target store where they can purchase clothes and presents. Lake Cares makes sure that these families have food on their table by partnering with Target, Publix and the Mount Dora Police to feed their needs.
New Homeowners: Newly constructed homes built by the Habitat for Humanity receive food to stock the homeowner’s refrigerator and food pantry. Families have enough to think about when they finally move into a home, so Lake Cares makes sure they don’t have to think about having food to eat. Veterans moving into the Veterans Village in Umatilla are the next families to receive this help.
School Children in Need: The Backpack Program is a partnership between Triangle Elementary School, St. Philip Lutheran Church and Lake Cares. Nutritious, easy to prepare food is packaged and sent home each weekend. More than 60 students receive these packs. This program closes the gap of hunger that weekends bring to many children. Over 87% of the children at the school qualify for free or reduced cost breakfast and lunch during the school week!!
Foster Care Help: Forward Paths Foundation is a volunteer organization providing housing assistance and skill building for young adults aging out of foster care at 18 years old. Many can and do become homeless if not for this group.