Donations help SWFL food banks; credit union helps payroll small businesses | Instant News


Many businesses and organizations are struggling now. But others show that we are Gulfshore Strong. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos donated $ 100 million to the Feeding America Network where Harry Chapin Food Bank in Southwest Florida participated. And local banks help businesses get their payroll loans.

Financial support will help the community in two main ways. One, it will help Harry Chapin Food Bank provide more food for the pantry stock than those who need it. And that will also help small businesses put money in their employees’ wallets.

In a time where every part helps, businesses help each other in a big way.

The Harry Chapin Food Bank operates 12 traveling food pantries throughout Southwest Florida every week, with declining food flows and increasing needs.

“This carries a significant price tag because many of the food sources we have to visit now are much more expensive than usual,” said Richard LeBer, president and CEO of the food bank.

However, with a piece of Bezos donations, Harry Chapin Food Bank can breathe a sigh of relief.

“We hope to receive our share of whatever it is and use it to help source and distribute food throughout our region,” LeBer said.

And small businesses in our area also help. Achieva Credit Union offers a payroll assistance loan program to maintain small businesses.

“These programs will actually allow many businesses that will struggle or even potentially go out of business to stay in business and be around paying their employees,” said Jennifer Galley, COO of Achieve Credit Union.

With so many small businesses closing their doors and seeking help, demand is so high that other banks and credit unions have reached their limits

“Applications are increasing minute by minute; however, we have received hundreds of requests for information, “Galley said.

“There are people who I believe have begun to reduce what they can offer,” Gakkey said. “They may be carrying out volume restrictions, so they say that we will no longer offer programs at this time.”

But Achieva keeps her program strong for all small businesses to become the lifelong line of support that many people need to survive. Achieva said small business owners can find loan applications on their website and must submit applications regardless of whether they are members of a credit union.

LeBer tells us that they don’t know how much money they will get from Bezos donations, but they hope to find out in the next few days.

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