Helping Neighbors: F.I.S.H. OF SANCAP and Sanibel Farmer’s Market partnership
The return of Farmer’s Market and its delicious fruits, vegetables, breads, cheeses and other items is a blessing for the FISH Food Pantry! The community couldn’t be happier, and F.I.S.H. OF SANCAP is overjoyed to, once again, partner with the market. Betsy Ventura and Jean Baer, co-managers of the Sanibel Farmer’s Market, organize and staff the market throughout its season. At the suggestion of Betsy and Jean, vendors pack boxes of unsold fruits, vegetables and goodies for the FISH food pantry at the end of every market Sunday. FISH volunteers unload the treats each Sunday afternoon at the FISH Food Pantry, located at 2430 Periwinkle Way, directly behind Bleu Rendez-Vous French Bistro.
Coming soon to the market, again at the suggestion of Ventura and Baer, is a FISH wagon where customers can purchase market goods for FISH, drop off canned foods for the pantry and/or make donations showing their support for FISH. “Says Baer, “We wanted to begin this program as a piolet, testing it at the Sanibel market and partnering with FISH, to see its success. If it is successful we will bring it to their other markets to benefit other food pantries. We have asked a very talented local high school student, Hannah Fay, to paint the display in the wagon to resemble a fish tank. Our hope is to encourage market attendees to either purchase an item at the market or to bring a non-perishable item to the market to place in the wagon as a donation to FISH.”
“FISH and our clients greatly appreciate the generosity of the Farmer’s Market. We cannot thank Betsy and Jean enough for encouraging the vendors to supply healthy choices for our clients, and for coming up with the wonderful donation wagon idea! Their continued support and eagerness to find fresh ways to support FISH is an integral part of the success of our food pantry. And thanks to Hannah as well! We are pleased to showcase her artistic talent through the ‘fish tank’ design, she is truly a wonderful artist,” said Maggi Feiner, FISH President & CEO. “Our volunteer teams, many of which include island youth earning community service hours, who pick up from the market and organize our food pantry on Sunday afternoons deserve huge kudos. We could not provide these wonderful healthy foods to our community without their help!”
The FISH Food Pantry is open Mon. – Fri. from 10 a.m. until 3:45 p.m. Those wishing to use the food pantry must reside in Lee County and complete an intake form annually. For additional information on FISH and it’s over 40 different programs and services, please visit their website, fishofsancap.org, or contact their Walk-In Center at 239-472-4775.