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Free rides to shop for Norfolk residents affected by Family Dollar fire

Volunteers with The Garden of Hope will drive residents to the Berkley Supermarket twice a week.

NORFOLK, Va. — There’s new help for Norfolk residents impacted by the Family Dollar fire on Church Street.

“They are our friends," said Philip Inabinette with The Garden of Hope. "They are our neighbors. They are our community.”

Many in the St. Paul’s Area still need help getting access to food following the fire just two weeks ago. It prompted The Garden of Hope to respond to the call for help.

“We wanted to meet their needs and provide them the transportation they needed to get the things that they need to get through their days and weeks and months ahead,” Inabinette said.

He said the organization is driving residents to the Berkley Supermarket.

In partnership with the Gethsemane Community Fellowship Baptist Church, volunteers will meet residents in the Family Dollar parking lot.

Volunteers will make three trips twice a week to the market for people who register for the service.

“Individuals who maybe don’t have an opportunity to get registered beforehand, we’ll still be here available," he said. "There’s still space available on the vans.”

As the group hopes to spread the word and meet the needs of many community members, organizers are also hoping to grow.

“We want to make sure to get those residents that information and make ourselves available so that we can provide additional days," Inabinette said. "Right now, we’re doing Tuesdays and Thursdays but we’re hopeful that we can provide additional days maybe on the weekends….where we can help those residents get to the things that they need in a different community.”

If you're looking to register for a ride, you can call the Gethsemane Community Fellowship Baptist Church at 757-622-0760.

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