Help from the Food Bank is turning Dover man’s life around

September 6, 2022

On Monday morning, DW – not his real name – pulled into the parking lot at the Food Bank of Delaware’s Healthy Pantry Center in Milford. He was not the first car of the morning, nor would he be the last; the center serves between 40 and 50 families every day out of a small, rented warehouse off Mullet Run in the Milford Industrial Park.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, this center operated on a much smaller scale out of the Milford site at 1040 Mattlind Way. The need was greater than the site, hence the expansion. Ground-breaking ceremonies later this month will mark the official start of a new 67,000 square-foot Milford facility in Independence Commons adjacent to the Delaware Veterans’ Home.

Healthy Pantry Centers are located at both the Milford and Newark Food Bank sites and directly distribute emergency food to people who are in need. People with disabilities and those who lack transportation may receive their weekly boxes at home through home delivery.

This was not DW’s first visit. “It’s my first visit in over six months. I just got out of the hospital,” he explained. After his stop at the Healthy Pantry Center, he had an appointment with his social worker to update his medical cards.

His hospital stay was not related to COVID-19 at all; DW was involved in a workplace accident in 2021. He recently had medullary rods surgically implanted in his leg to avoid amputation. “I can’t go back to work,” he said.

Needless to say, the accident changed this 47-year-old Dover man’s life. “I was fired too, with just two months to go before I could collect my pension. It couldn’t get any worse,” he said. “I have good support. I moved back with my parents, and I don’t know what I would do without them.”

The injuries he sustained make ordinary daily activities – sitting, standing, even putting on socks – more difficult, DW explained. He’s unsure whether additional surgeries are in his future.  “My parents have very little food in their refrigerator. They’re getting older and will need care too. In a tragedy, we turn to our source of faith. It’s an evolving situation. I don’t take things for granted. With help, I’m turning my life around,” he said.

To learn more about ways the Food Bank of Delaware assists the community, click here.

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