Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 03-26-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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2 CUMBERLAND / LINCOLN MARCH 26-APRIL 1, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE | CUMBERLAND LINCOLN EDITION 2 CUMBERLAND – Volunteers at the Northern Rhode Island Food Pantry are changing the way they operate in response to the COVID- 19 pandemic, hand-delivering bags of groceries to people in their vehicles. Switching from the typical self- serve assembly line is more work, said volunteer Chuck Marcotte, but it keeps visitors safer. The food pantry at the intersec- tion of Angell Road and Mendon Road held its first distribution event under new drive-thru procedures last Saturday, March 21. "We decided to hit them outside," said Marcotte. "Hopefully we're going to get back to normal." Each visitor to the parking lot received the standard three bags of groceries, including meat and produce. Items were prepackaged, and recipients were not required to interact with anyone to receive food. A police officer monitored the outdoor distribution event. A sign on the door states that no visitors could enter and that there were no restrooms available. "We will put a number on your car and bring the food to you," the sign read. "Stay in your car until your number is served." The sign also told patrons that there were no pastries or eggs avail- able. Volunteers reported smooth oper- ations and no waiting lines. "We thank you for your patience and understanding as we attempt to continue to provide this vital ser- vice to our community," stated an announcement to the community. Marcotte said volunteers expect increasing demand as people are hurt by a declining economy, par- ticularly the increasing number of local layoffs. The Northern Rhode Island Food Pantry is a member agency of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Call 401-347-5714 or visit www.NRIFoodPantry.org for more. The pantry is open from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on the third Saturday of each month. Northern R.I. Food Pantry goes to drive-thru service By ETHAN SHOREY Valley Breeze Managing Editor ethan@valleybreeze.com BREEZE PHOTO BY ETHAN SHOREY CHUCK MARCOTTE, of the Northern Rhode Island Food Pantry, shows the pre- packaged food bags that would be hand-delivered to recipients last Saturday. Thank you to our local medical professionals At no time in recent memory have those in the medical and wellness fields been seen as so vital to our lives, and it's not even a question that they'll continue being there for us. In this week's papers is our 10th annual Health & Wellness Directory, which has traditionally proven to be a valuable resource to our readers as they've searched out the best people to meet their health needs. We want to give a special thank you to all of these professionals and the important work that they're doing in keeping us healthy and safe. Many will need extra patience from those who rely on them. We trust that you'll support these people during this time and when the ongoing health crisis is over. - Ethan Shorey, Valley Breeze Editor Breeze contest postponed A Breeze-sponsored video contest for local high school students has been postponed to the next school year due to the fact that students are not in school to collaborate on the project, which asked students to create clips highlighting the importance of local news and The Breeze in the community. We thank all of those who expressed interest and look forward to partnering on this fun initiative next year. CCRI cancels commencement LINCOLN – The Community College of Rhode Island announced on Monday that the college will cancel this year's commencement ceremony in May and continue with remote learning for the remainder of the spring semester, until May 8. CCRI President Meghan Hughes said the decisions were made "in the interest of the health and well-being of our community" and that the college will "work hard to find a way to cele- brate the Class of 2020 at a later date."

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