FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The Better Business Bureau Serving Northern Indiana is the community watchdog for scams. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s still serving the community in that capacity, but also helping medical staff.
The Better Business Bureau Serving Northern Indiana launched a GoFundMe campaign, “Feeding the Front Lines,” to help boost morale at hospitals in some of the hardest hit counties.
“We wanted to do something to make sure we’re supporting the community in times of the coronavirus, as well. And so, that’s where BBB Feeding the Front Lines came about,” says Nichole Thomas, communications director for BBB NE.
BBB Serving Northern Indiana covers 23 counties. Money raised through Feeding the Front Lines is heading to emergency rooms with high COVID-19 numbers first.
“Which would be Allen County, Lake County, Porter County, St. Joseph County, they’re seeing the highest number of cases right now. So, they’re right there on the frontlines, and we’ll spread to other counties when funds are available.”
The BBB is asking for at least a $10 donation, which covers the cost of one meal.
“We’re going to facilitate that delivery, hopefully, through local businesses who have modified their concept from dine-in to a carryout or delivery.”
The hope is to boost morale, but also keep those frontline workers and patients safe, too.
“We don’t necessarily want them out in the community to grab a bite to eat because they could potentially be spreading that, or someone could spread it to them, and we need them to be on the frontlines.”
Thomas also says she been hearing from medical personnel they don’t have the same access to hospital cafeterias that they once did.
The GoFundMe has seen hundreds of dollar already donated, with a total goal of $10,000. And because it’s the BBB, you can trust the money is going to the right source.
“These are actually monitored by Paypal giving, which is a little bit of a different arm than GoFundMe. So, they actually send us the funds after we’ve used them. So, folks can be sure we’re actually going to get those meals in people’s hands before the funds are actually reimbursed to us. And that’s okay. We’re here to help. It’s not about money. As much as we raise, is as much as we can do. We hope to do a lot, and to do a lot of good. But we’ll do as much as we can, and feed as much as we can.”
The money is part of the BBB NE’s Charitable and Education Fund, meaning any donation will be tax deductible for the donor. Thomas says they hope to be able to start delivering meals on Monday.
If you’d like to donate to the GoFundMe, click here.
To learn how you can sign your ER staff up for the meals, click here.