Community members offer help to elderly and essential workers

Local News

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — People across the Ozarks are offering a helping hand during this health crisis by making sure essential workers and the elderly are being taken care of.

Around noon on March 25, a married couple dropped off a free catered lunch for Price Cutter employees courtesy of Coyote’s Cafe.

“We want to help as many people as possible,” said Taylor Goessmann, provider of meals to essential workers. “So we think about those people that are having to step up right now during this weird time this pandemic that you wouldn’t typically think of. The grocery store cashiers that are working 16 days straight, the truck drivers.”

Goessmann says she created a Facebook event called “Thank you, Essential Personnel!” This event is meant to deliver meals to essential workers.

“The grocery store cashiers that are working 16 days straight, the truck drivers, the daycare providers, the cleaning crews, and then, of course, we want to help those medical professionals,” Goessmann said

This wouldn’t be possible, according to Goessmann, if it wasn’t for the donations from the community.

Almost $500 has been raised to help serve 65 grocery store employees.

“You go to the Facebook event, and there’s a money pool there for PayPal,” Goessmann said. “The money that you donate goes directly to the restaurants. The more money we raise, the more catered lunches we can do.”

Simply Delicious Catering in Springfield is also providing meals.

“We see the need in the community and know that there are a lot of people that are still needing to go to work and aren’t having time in their homes to be able to prepare their meals,” said Blythe Richardson Smith, with Simply Delicious Catering.

Smith delivers hot meals around town.

“We want to give right back to the community,” Smith said. “We just want to be here and make sure that we’re here to stay and we’re not going anywhere through this COVID. We’re here to support them.”

Hot meals are also being delivered by Marlon Graves.

“I’m offering a delivery service that is mainly for those who are in need,” Graves said. “I really like to focus more on elderly people.”

Marlon is offering free deliveries of meals and groceries to the elderly in Springfield.

“Everybody is hurting right now,” Graves said. “And so I’m just looking at a way that I can pay it back.”

Here in Springfield, the elderly can use his services free of charge.

“I’ve seen a lot of elderly people always ask could you do this for me, could you do that for me? And, I always thought of ways that I could really help out. Because of the COVID virus and situation, everybody is hurting right now and so I’m just looking at a way that I can pay it back,” Graves said.

Graves says he takes many precautions such as wearing gloves while he drives.

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