Garden & Cafe Tours at Community Cooperative

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Sam Galloway Jr. & Friends announce 12th Annual Soup Kitchen Benefit

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FORT MYERS, FL. (January 30, 2015) – One of the season's most anticipated events will be held on Thursday, March 5, 2015.

Sam Galloway Jr. & Friends Annual Soup Kitchen Benefit will be held at the Sam Galloway Ford, located off Boy Scout Drive and Summerlin Road. Cocktails start off the evening at 6:00pm, with dinner following at 7:00pm. The Gulf Coast Symphony, led by Maestro Andrew Kurtz, will present "Gershwin, Berlin & More!"

The money raised at the event assist in the funding for Community Cooperative, the umbrella agency for the Community Cafés and Markets, the Soup Kitchen, Meals on Wheels, Healthy School Pantry and Food Literacy in Pre-School (FLIP) programs, Mobile Food Pantries, and Social and Education Resource Centers for our hungry and homeless residents in need. The event has sold out for several years and continues to be one of the signature events in our community. Each year, local restaurants, companies and individuals donate the southern-style menu including barbeque chicken and pork, fried chicken, coleslaw, fried shrimp, cheese grits, swamp cabbage, gourmet meatloaf, mashed potatoes, gumbo, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, fresh green beans, corn bread, banana pudding, homemade cookies and gourmet chocolates.

"This is our 12th year of some dear friends and businesses joining together to help those in need in our community," said Sam Galloway Jr. "Hunger continues to be a serious problem in our own backyard. More and more of our neighbors and their children need help and it doesn't seem to be getting any better."

According to Tracey Galloway, CEO of Community Cooperative, the need within the Southwest Florida community continues to grow. "There are over 3,400 documented homeless individuals in Lee County; more than 1,200 are children," says Galloway. "Our mission is to end hunger and homelessness in Lee County by addressing the root causes and finding sustainable solutions to achieve long term success for our clients."

Community Cooperative is an innovative nonprofit 501(c) 3 organization made up of social service entrepreneurs fighting to end homelessness and hunger in our community. The agency provides more than 14,000 meals each month through its Community Cafés and Marketplace and Meals on Wheels programs. Community Cooperative offers homeless and comprehensive case management services through its Social & Education Resource Centers and oversees emergency mobile food pantries as well as Healthy School Pantries and Food Literacy in Preschool (FLIP) through its Growing Health Kids Programs.

A proud United Way partner, Community Cooperative serves Fort Myers and the greater Lee County area, including Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres and Fort Myers Beach. Community Cooperative works in close partnership with, The Harry Chapin Food Bank and The School District of Lee County as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups, churches, businesses and community support organizations.

For more information, call 239-332-7687, ext. 6 or visit www.CommunityCooperative.com.

FINAL TOURNAMENT SET FOR “HIGH HANDS FOR HUNGER” SERIES

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january dateFORT MYERS, FL – (Jan. 6, 2015) – Community Cooperative's third tournament in the "High Hands for Hunger Charity No Limit Texas Hold 'Em Tournament Series" is Saturday, January 31, 2015. The event will be held at Brodeur Carvell Fine Apparel, at the Bell Tower Shops, Fort Myers, and will benefit Community Cooperative in assisting men, women, and children in our community facing hunger and homelessness.

"Both the first and second tournaments of High Hands for Hunger were a fabulous success," says Tracey Galloway, CEO of Community Cooperative. "The participants had a great time, the winners walked away with a nice prize pool and the proceeds ensured that we can continue to make an impact with our clients."

"We are very excited to host the third tournament at Brodeur Carvell," said Ron Brodeur. "It's a fun way to support Community Cooperative and we have a fun filled night planned for both the players and spectators!"

Bell Tower Shops is the presenting sponsor along with CRS Technology and Family Thrift Centers as other series sponsors. Player Tournament Passes are still available for a $ 125 donation, which includes a seat at Saturday's tournament, hosted hors d'oeuvres, top-shelf bar, and casino games.

Since its creation in 1984, Community Cooperative has been providing emergency food outreach and resources to communities across Lee County. Community Cooperative serves the greater Lee County area, including Fort Myers, Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres and Pine Island. Community Cooperative works in partnership with United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades and Okeechobee, Harry Chapin Food Bank and regional community foundations as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups including The School District of Lee County and numerous churches, businesses and community support organizations.

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Subaru Share the Love Event & Meals On Wheels

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TODAY MARKS THE START OF THE 8TH ANNUAL SHARE THE LOVE EVENT!

Community Cooperative is proud to announce its partnership with O'Brien Subaru this holiday season to help fight senior isolation and hunger, one Subaru at a time. Subaru's "Share the Love" event helps deliver nutritious meals and compassion to southwest Florida seniors.

Community Cooperative helped raise community awareness and participation to support local seniors in need. This local effort is part of the Meals On Wheels Association of America's participation in Subaru of America, Inc.'s national year-end "Share the Love" event, designed as a way to give back to local communities.

As a proud Subaru "Share the Love" event charitable partner, local Meals On Wheels Member programs that partner with Subaru retailers are eligible to earn grants of up to $20,000. This can provide an extra layer of support to help deliver nutritious meals and other important services to seniors in our community.

"Subaru and Meals on Wheels have worked together since 2008, helping deliver more than 1.2 million meals, friendly visits and safety checks to America's seniors," said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO, Meals on Wheels America. "We are truly honored to be one of Subaru's long-standing national charities for the eighth consecutive year. The substantial support generated through the Share the Love Event ensures that our seniors are not forgotten."

For every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased from November 19, 2015, through January 2, 2016, Subaru will donate $250 to the purchaser's choice of participating charity – one of which being Meals on Wheels. By the end of this year, Subaru and its retailers will have donated more than $65 million to charity through the Share the Love Event.

About Meals On Wheels Association of America

Meals on Wheels America is the oldest and largest national organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior isolation and hunger. This network exists in virtually every community in America and, along with more than two million staff and volunteers, delivers the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that enable America's seniors to live nourished lives with independence and dignity. By providing funding, leadership, education, research and advocacy support, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time. For more information, or to find a Meals on Wheels provider near you, visit www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org

BiLo Holdings Foundation Gives Holiday & Program Support

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 The Bi-Lo Holdings Foundation recently awarded Community Cooperative with $10,000 to support our Meals On Wheels program that provides home delivered meals and additional services to seniors living in Lee County! Meals On Wheels not only provides a hot meal but also supplemental groceries, social service follow-up and even assistance with caring for pets. The program provides a spectrum of services to help keep program participants living independently in their own homes. Our goal is to decrease senior hunger and maintain a high quality of life for the seniors living in Lee County. The grant support from the Bi-Lo Holdings Foundation will help feed hungry seniors, many who are living on fixed incomes and cannot afford to pay for meals on their own. We cannot thank the foundation enough for this vital partnership in the effort to end senior hunger in our community. 

donated100turkeys11 24_14The mission of the Bi-Lo Holdings Foundation is to help launch or faciliatate sustainable programs that alleviate hunger directly or enhance hunger-related education or healthy initiatives. In addition, the foundation provides immediate assistance to communities that may suffer from the effects of natural disasters. Not only did the Bi-Lo Holdings Foundation award grant funding to our Meals On Wheels program, but also donated 100 turkeys to our emergency food programs for the holiday season! We are grateful to Bi-Lo Holdings Foundation for this additional support of our programs to help neighbors in need and of our mission to end hunger in Lee County!

“Empty Bowls Event” at Bell Tower Shops

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emptybowlsposterFort Myers, FL. (November 13, 2014)-- A collaborative event between Community Cooperative, the Lee Arts Education Program and the Bell Tower Shops will be held on Saturday, December 6, 2014, from 11am – 2pm. The event will feature the sale of handcrafted ceramic bowls by local Lee County school children, refreshments from Bell Tower eateries, music and dance performances by local schools – all supporting the Healthy School Pantry and FLIP (Food Literacy in Preschool) programs of Community Cooperative.

"We are excited about the collaboration of these groups in putting together this event", says Tracey Galloway, CEO of Community Cooperative. "The Lee Arts Education Program was looking for an opportunity to continue the ceramic bowl artwork of their students and it is such a perfect fit for what our organization is committed to doing in our area – end hunger and homelessness in Lee County. "

"We approached Community Cooperative to continue this project," says Joy Williams, Cypress Lake Middle School Arts teacher and President of Lee Arts Education Program. "We welcome the opportunity for our students to not only be creative but fulfill the 'Soup Karma: Every bowl you empty fills someone else's'. The students have been very enthusiastic about participating in this event."

The community has the opportunity to purchase the handcrafted bowls at the event - One bowl for $ 20 or Three for $ 50, which will include complimentary soup and accompaniment provided by Bell Tower restaurants. The event will take place in front of the Saks Fifth Avenue store and continuing down the northern end of the Bell Tower Shops, from 11am – 2pm.

Community Cooperative is an innovative nonprofit 501(c) 3 organization made up of social service entrepreneurs fighting to end homelessness and hunger in our community. The agency provides more than 14,000 meals each month through its Community Cafés and Marketplace and Meals on Wheels programs. Community Cooperative offers homeless and comprehensive case management services through its Social & Education Resource Centers and oversees emergency mobile food pantries as well as Healthy School Pantries and Food Literacy in Preschool (FLIP) through its Growing Health Kids Programs.

A proud United Way partner, Community Cooperative serves Fort Myers and the greater Lee County area, including Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres and Fort Myers Beach. Community Cooperative works in close partnership with, The Harry Chapin Food Bank and The School District of Lee County as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups, churches, businesses and community support organizations.

Bank of America Funds Fresh Food Project

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2checkpresentation2014The Bank of America Charitable Foundation awarded Community Cooperative a grant of $7,500 to support the Fresh Food Project! The Fresh Food Project is an initiative launched to provide fresh produce, meat, and dairy to low-income households in Lee County. The project offers nutritious, fresh food to families who lack access to healthy food due to absence of large grocery markets in their neighborhoods, cost barriers, and culture. Reports show low-income households tend to eat more processed and unhealthy foods because they are readily available and less expensive. This leads to a higher incidence of poor health. This is especially detrimental to children who need nutritious food to grow and thrive.

Bank of America Charitable Foundations grant funding will directly impact the ability for low-income families in our community to eat more healthy food through our emergency food programs. Programs like our Community Markets & Cafes, Healthy School Pantries, Food Literacy In Pre-school, and Meals On Wheels will increase access to fresh food for the entire spectrum of clients we serve from children to seniors and all those struggling with hunger and homelessness in our community. A HUGE thanks goes out to Bank of America for their partnership in our mission to build brighter futures in Lee County through food, social services, and education!

Community Cooperative is an innovative nonprofit 501(c)3 organization made up of social service entrepreneurs fighting to end homelessness and hunger in our community. The agency provides more than 14,000 meals each month through its Community Café and Marketplace and Home Delivered Meals programs. Community Cooperative offers homeless and comprehensive case management services through its United Way Resource Houses, oversees an emergency mobile food pantry and supplies school pantries and weekend backpacks full of food to more than 1,500 children and their families each school year.

Community Cooperative serves Fort Myers and the greater Lee County area, including Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres and Fort Myers Beach. Community Cooperative works in partnership with United Way of Lee, Hendry and Glades, Harry Chapin Food Bank and various community foundations as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups including The School District of Lee County and numerous churches, businesses and community support organizations.

Tickets Still Available for "High Hands for Hunger"

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A Charity No Limit Texas Hold 'Em Poker Tournament -- REGISTER HERE!

FORT MYERS, FL – (Nov. 4, 2014) – Community Cooperative's second tournament in the "High Hands for Hunger Charity No Limit Texas Hold 'Em Tournament Series" is Saturday, November 8, 2014. The event will be held at the Sam Galloway Lincoln dealership, 1800 Boyscout Drive, Fort Myers, and will benefit Community Cooperative in assisting men, women, and children in our community facing hunger and homelessness every day.

"The first segment of High Hands for Hunger was a fabulous success," says Tracey Galloway, CEO of Community Cooperative. "The 100 or so participants had a great time, the winners walked away with a nice prize pool and the proceeds ensured that we can continue to make an impact with our clients."

Bell Tower Shops is the presenting sponsor along with CRS Technology and Family Thrift Centers as other series sponsors. Player Tournament Passes are still available for a $ 125 donation, which includes a seat at Saturday's tournament, hosted hors d'oeuvres, top-shelf bar, and casino games.

Since its creation in 1984, Community Cooperative has been providing emergency food outreach and resources to communities across Lee County. Community Cooperative serves the greater Lee County area, including Fort Myers, Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres and Pine Island. Community Cooperative works in partnership with United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades and Okeechobee, Harry Chapin Food Bank and regional community foundations as well as collaborating with fellow community and service groups including The School District of Lee County and numerous churches, businesses and community support organizations.