By Michael Turnbell
I was feeling down. I wasn’t having the kind of productive day I wanted working from home after losing internet service for hours. After four weeks of living with stay-at-home orders, I felt even more isolated. I closed my laptop and went for a long walk to clear my head. When I returned two hours later, two voicemails from Food For The Poor were waiting for me.
I listened. It sounded like someone was crying or overcome with emotion.
“Michael,” he said, “you don’t have to return my call. I just saw where you donated the protective suits to…excuse me for getting…” his voice cracking.
“My kid is a first responder and thanks for helping out the guys in Florida. Those guys are truly angels in the end. We need to do everything to help them out. Thanks again. They say Food For The Poor does a great job. I’m getting control of myself now. But thanks for helping out the first responders.”
Five minutes later, he called again and left another message.
“Michael, I called you a bit ago, I apologize for getting so emotional. My kid is a paramedic and firefighter in Arizona. I didn’t realize Food For The Poor did something like that. All that did was add credence to the reason why I’ve donated to Food For The Poor for a number of years and when I reach a point where I can donate a little more money every month, I certainly will. Our first responders and folks in the hospitals and stuff, they’re truly angels. I get a call from your folks every month when I make a contribution. I tell you that really means a lot. You’re the only organization that does that. Keep it up!”
He must have read our press release and social media posts about the donation of 350 protective suits to the Pompano Beach Fire Rescue and a second donation of 350 suits to Broward Health. The protective suits were donated to Food For The Poor by Gleaning For The World, one of the charity’s partners. I can’t imagine how worried he is about his son. He didn’t leave his name or number so I couldn’t return the thanks.
For the first time since this coronavirus turned all of us into work-from-home warriors, I cried. His words of encouragement were the salve my soul needed at exactly the right time. It was a reminder that all of us at Food For The Poor, every single one of us, are doing the right thing, giving hope and making a difference in countless ways during this time.
Michael Turnbell is a Public Relations Associate at Food For The Poor.