Over the past few months there have been numerous requests from many sources for donations to help those in need during the coronavirus pandemic. On a local level, your contributions have been put to good use. Here are reports from the CWE Farm, Storied House face mask project, and the CWE North CID’s meals program.
When Nancy and Arthur Culbert celebrated the CWE Farm’s 10th anniversary with an effort to raise $10,000 for 3 area food pantries, the response from the community was overwhelming. Their letter of gratitude (below) follows some recent photos of the farm at 5057 Waterman, just west of Kingshighway. (Arthur Culbert and Lee Cagle, one of the new farm managers, are shown with Lee’s daughter Aiko, below right.)
Hooray! With great joy we deem our Central West End Farm 10-year celebration an overwhelming success. Your generosity far exceeded our expectations. From LA to Miami, Boston back to St. Louis, seventy-eight citizens wanting to make a difference donated $12,000 to help feed our hungry neighbors during these challenging times. You didn’t just donate, either. You gave enthusiastically from the heart.
One ten year old and his eight year old sister reported combining the contents of their piggy banks to donate $17.25. Another donor contributed a portion of her stimulus check. A Dad donated to demonstrate his desire to support his daughter’s volunteer work with the Farm.
Through all of your contributions we significantly exceeded our goal of $10,000! We are immensely grateful for your support, as are the patrons of our recipient food pantries. We are thrilled that Sprouting Gift Gardens Foundation will deliver $4,000.00 checks to Second Presbyterian Church, Trinity Episcopal Church, and Central Baptist Church food ministries to support their efforts to feed the hungry in our old neighborhood in Saint Louis.
Take good care of yourselves and each other. Be well. And remember, there’s no place like hope.
With gratitude and love,
Arthur & Nancy Culbert
CWEnder Suzanne Miller Farrell was overwhelmed with orders for face masks following my April 16th post on sources for face coverings found in the neighborhood. Miller Farrell has a production team in the U.S. that was making masks using fabrics culled from her home accessories line, The Storied House. She also decided she would allocate a portion of sales to create masks at no charge for those who could not afford them.
Miller Farrell recently emailed an update about that effort:
“The $$ I raised from mask sales have provided nearly 1,000 masks to frontlinters here and in Ireland, and to 800 school children in South Africa. YAY!”
In addition, shortly after the stay-at-home orders went into effect in the City of St. Louis, this tireless entrepreneur started an online 10-day Creativity Challenge. That proved to be such a success that she recently launched The Creative Courant, a weekly good news (remember that?) journal. Each Friday, Farrell emails well-researched and inspiring stories as well as fun links to entertain both you and your families. You’d be wise to subscribe.
News from the CWE North Community Improvement District:
Finally, you may remember seeing an opportunity to contribute to the CWE North Community Improvement District’s program to fund meals prepared by neighborhood restaurants for delivery to healthcare workers at BJC and to City Hope STL, a homeless shelter.
Under this initiative, local restaurants were paid $15 for each meal they provided to the program, which offered a supplemental source of revenue while they navigated uncharted waters.
The CID’s Executive Director Kate Haher reported that $32,700 has gone into funding this effort, $7,425 of which has come from contributions from the community.
Thank you to neighbors here and afar for what you have done for these organizations and many others. As the saying goes—and it’s so true—we’re in this together.
It’s been interesting to see how local business owners adapt to new ways of operating in the time of COVID-19. A good example is Mike’s Bikes, 234 N. Euclid, which is now offering curbside repair services and home delivery for bike purchases priced at $150 and up.
If your wheels are squeaky – and whose aren’t these days – attach the bike to a lock on the rack out front, call the shop (314.875.0800), describe the problem, and the staff will take it from there (including disinfecting your bike before bringing it inside).
Co-proprietors Eric Schlling and Matt McRedmond have also set up a new website westendcyclery.com to handle online bike sales, as their current site is not e-commerce friendly. New bikes ($150 and up) can be delivered within 20 miles of 63108. Their efforts to adapt appear to have paid off. To date they have sold 43 bikes on the West End Cyclery site.
Mikes Bikes, 234 N. Euclid, 314.875.0800, Mon. – Fri. 10 to 5, Sat. 11 to 3. Call first, especially on Saturdays, as their hours have changed several times since the stay-at-home order went into effect, and they may be out delivering one of those new bikes.
The CWE North Community Improvement District (the North CID), which includes businesses in the commercial district north of Lindell on and off Euclid up to Washington Ave., has allocated $300,000 for the purchase of gift cards from businesses within the District. (The CID receives its funding from a 1% tax on sales within the district’s boundaries.)
The objective is to put cash in the hands of businesses now, in an effort to assist them through the COVID-19 stay-at-home order. The gift cards will be available for distribution to the public once the business community is reactivated. Details will be forthcoming.
In addition, the CWENorthCID has earmarked $32,700 for the purchase of meals from participating restaurants within the District to be delivered to staff at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and homeless clients in residence at City Hope STL, a local 501C-3 .
The CID’s contribution funds the purchase of 150 meals per day, 3 days a week, and is divided among 15 participating restaurants* on a rotating basis. 4 restaurants per day prepare the meals. Ken Fowler and staff from Mary Ann’s Tearoom have volunteered to deliver the meals, see photo above.
*Participating CWE Restaurants:
There is an opportunity to contribute to this fund. 100% of your donation goes directly to participating CWE restaurants. A $15 donation funds one meal; $4,613 has been raised from the community in just three days. Here’s the contribution link.
The CID is also offering an incentive program intended to encourage purchases from neighborhood businesses during the shutdown.
Neighbors are invited to save receipts from purchases made within the District between now and May 15th and redeem them for gift cards at the CWENorthCID office, 449 N. Euclid at Washington, once the stay-at-home order is lifted.
Receipts totaling $100 will earn a $20 gift card; $200 in purchases earns $50 in gift cards. Here are more details in St. Louis Magazine about the gift card program. Even more information can be found in a recent press release.
For questions about these programs, please contact CWENorthCID Executive Director Kate Haher, email@example.com