CT Checkup: ‘South Windsor Strong’ connects restaurants, volunteers with town organizations feeding those in need during the pandemic

Hartford

SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. (WTNH) — Genevieve Coursey started the ‘South Windsor Strong’ initiative to tackle multiple challenges she saw her community facing during the COVID-19 pandemic, all while giving those looking to give back a simple avenue to do so. 

“It’s a three-fold benefit to the town, to people in need, and to our frontline workers,” said the South Windsor resident.  

The new initiative partners with the South Windsor Chamber of Commerce, the South Windsor Hunger Action Team, and the South Windsor Jaycees- another local volunteer group – to turn donations from individuals and businesses into meals for essential workers and those who are food insecure. 

All meals are purchased from local restaurants to give them support during the pandemic, as well. 

“We have identified several businesses and organizations for these frontline workers and each week we target about 50 to 100 meals we’d like to donate each week,” Coursey said. 

Tuesday, volunteers delivered 200 meals to Manchester Memorial Hospital in partnership with four South Windsor businesses—including Topstone Restaurant. 

“It feels good to have that comradery between other businesses in town that we don’t really know personally but we’re all in a sense working together,” said Stephen Shonty, who owns Topstone Restaurant. 

He thinks the initiative makes giving back more accessible to anyone looking to help. 

“With someone that already has the organization in place, the logistics already set, it’s easy for individuals and businesses to make a phone call and just get involved,” he explained. 

Donations can be made on the ‘South Windsor Strong’ Facebook page, and Coursey says they will continue to donate as long as they have the funds to do so. 

With a community like South Windsor, though, she’s not worried. 

“People want to help in our town and it’s been really amazing to see.”

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