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One nonagenarian woman, neighbours called “Mrs. W,” had gone without groceries for 2 weeks due to the pandemic.

Jake Bland, an operations manager with Hometown Hauling in Louisville, Kentucky, was doing his rounds of trash pickup when he noticed something strange. For over two weeks, a 90-year-old woman that neighbours called “Mrs. W” hadn’t put out her garbage bins.

No groceries for 2 weeks

Bland immediately asked dispatch to call and check-in and realized his gut feeling had been right. The dispatcher, Bernice Arthur, called the house and learned that the woman inside had gone without groceries for two weeks.

“She just didn’t have nothing to eat,” Arthur told WDRB, “and that’s why she had no trash to put out there.”

It turned out the woman was too fearful of going out to buy groceries due to COVID-19.

She has no family, nobody. I said, ‘You do have a family now.’

Bernice Arthur

His employer stepped in

Then, Bland’s employer, Hometown Hauling did something amazing. The company arranged to have groceries delivered to “Mrs. W.” But not only that, they also paid for everything.

Bland said the lesson that we all need to gather from this heartwarming story is to keep an eye out for our neighbours. We never know when they could need our help.

“It was even in a nice neighbourhood,” Bland said. “You never know what’s going on in your neighbour’s house.”

“Had we not reached out to her- she wasn’t reaching out to anyone,” Arthur said. “It taught me, regardless, check on them. Put something on their porch. Let them know.”

Look out for each other

Jake Bland made a great point. No matter how our neighbourhoods may look, we can never really know what’s happening inside. So, while keeping privacy in mind, it’s important to check-in on our neighbours to make sure they’re safe. This shouldn’t just be a job for garbagemen and delivery drivers– we all need to pitch in to support the people around us.

More uplifting stories:

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“The purpose of life is to contribute in some way to making things better.” – Robert F. Kennedy