We're looking for "good news" stories from communities about acts of kindness and caring in the wake of the coronavirus crisis in Montgomery County.
If you are, or if you know of a neighbor, who is doing something to help others through these difficult times, let us know. We're compiling a list of the good things people are doing to help their neighbors and local businesses as we all work to get through this crisis.
Reader Donna Hensley of Hatfield submitted the following about her son-in-law Ken Ferry:
"On his way home from work he stopped at BJs for the Coronavirus essentials (not toilet paper), waited for a cart, fought his way through the many, many desperate shoppers only to find a line wrapped around the store, literally.
"After purchasing his items, as he was going to his car, a woman asked him if the store still had water. As usual Ken being the social butterfly he is got to talking to her and came to find out she had just come from visiting her son who has cancer at CHOP.
"He didn’t want her to have to wait all that time just for water, so he gave her all the water in his cart!!! He also gave her his number and told her if she needed anything else to just call him and he would pick it up and deliver it to her so she wouldn’t have to brave the stores."
Mike Schatz, a private driver based in Montgomery Township, said his business has slowed down since last week's closures and quarantines, but he's helped fill the gap by doing good deeds for those who can't get around.
"I have one client who's homebound, and she doesn't get out unless somebody's there. She called me and said 'Hey, I know you live near Trader Joe's,' and she needs gluten-free food, so I went and got what she needed," Schatz said.
Another local family had to cut a trip to Florida short due to travel restrictions, and Schatz said he was able to pick them up from Allentown's airport and bring them back to the North Penn area when ride sharing services couldn't.
Since the quarantines and shutdowns started, Schatz said, he's had about 80 percent of his previously scheduled appointments for drives to airports in Philadelphia, New York and Newark postponed or rescheduled. So, anyone in Montgomery Township, North Wales or Chalfont who can't travel or needs help with a trip to a drug store, grocery store, or other errand can call or text him at 267-245-4047 to make arrangements.
"It's just my mindset. This is the way I was raised, you just do things for neighbors. If I can help somebody, that's great," he said.
Comments of our Facebook post looking for acts of kindness proved our community is really looking out for each other.
Zenon Janiki, who lives in Upper Providence and is the owner of Janicki Party Planning, took his family out to collect food for local food pantries in the since there was no work.
Reader Kayanna Lee said Angela Horvat and Karen Pierson have been out feeding the homeless.
Michelle Scarpitti Sapp said their neighborhood, Wiltshire at Oxford, is doing a food drive for Oxford Area Neighborhood Services Center (NSC). One family will collect from each neighbors porch and make a scheduled delivery.
Several local restaurants are chipping in and getting food out to the kids in the community:
Sheila Dugan, of Pottstown, said that beginning Thursday, March 19, Grumpy's Handcarved Sandwiches in Pottstown will be serving school kids a hot breakfast to go starting Thursday for as long as they can.
Another commenter said that Uptown Flavors LLC in Pottstown is giving away a free meal to kids from the Pottstown community from 2-5 p.m. March 18-20.
Savilles Diner and Brookside Restaurant have donated food to Prestons Pantry.
To keep boredom at bay, businesses are also offering online classes.
Beverly's Pastry Shop in Pottstown is giving Quarantine Cooking Classes on her Facebook page.
The Lord’s Pantry in Downingtown is still open. To help keep social distancing, volunteers shop with the client over the phone, then meet them at the door with their groceries.
Teachers at Lionville Middle school are adopting families to help get them food during this time.
For the next two weeks, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., a movement called Feed Coatesville Kids will have food at the Benner Building, Caln Elementary School, Coatesville Area Senior High School, Veterans Constructions Co., Olivet Methodist Church, Rainbow Elementary School, Scott Middle School, South Coatesville Borough Hall and West End Fire Hall. There will also be drop offs at Indian Run, Regency Park and Round Hill, according to the flier posts on Facebook.
It's not all about food. The Peer Support and Teen Talk Lines are open and available in Montgomery County for anyone who needs support. From 1 to 9 p.m. every day, Teens can text 215-703-8411 or call 866-825-5856, and adults can text 267-225-7785 or call 855-715-8255 to get support. If you're in crisis, please call Montgomery County Mobile Crisis at 855-6344673. More information can be found at accessservices.org.
Cloud10 Car Wash:
In an effort to help those impacted the hardest during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, Cloud10 Car Wash, located at 262 Bethlehem Pike, Colmar, will be donating 50 percent of car wash sales generated this Saturday March 21 and Sunday March 22 to the Manna on Main Street food bank.