“It’s been a pleasure.”
That’s how Fire-Rescue Chief Eddie Ferguson describes the last 12 months. Huh? Has he been dealing with the same pandemic as the rest of us? Of course, he has. And he is right on the front lines. Chief Ferguson, Deputy Chief Mike Watkins, and other members of Goochland Fire-Rescue and Emergency Services come to GoochlandCares every day, Monday through Friday, to pick up food from the Food Pantry. GoochlandCares staff and volunteers pack bags with food, personal hygiene items, and cleaning supplies. Chief Ferguson and his team deliver to GoochlandCares clients and others in the community who are not able to make it to our facility given current circumstances.
The effort is part of the Goochland Community Citizen Task Force created last March at the beginning of the crisis. In addition to Fire-Rescue and Emergency Services, the Sheriff’s Office, and GoochlandCares, the Task Force includes Social Services, Public Schools, Chickahominy Health District, YMCA, and Rotary*. According to Paul Drumwright, Goochland County Administrative Services Manager, “In true Goochland fashion, all these organizations and agencies have come together to cooperatively address the needs of our community through the best use of resources during the COVID-19 pandemic, while avoiding duplication of efforts.” Task Force members plan to continue collaborating even when things return to “normal.” Chief Ferguson says, “It’s so nice meeting people in the community, making sure they have what they need, and keeping in touch with them.”
Sergeant Shawn Creasey of the Sheriff’s Office agrees. He delivers prescription medicines and food to GoochlandCares clients and others. Many are elderly, have disabilities, don’t drive, don’t have access to transportation, or have health issues and cannot risk going to the pharmacy or grocery store. Starting on March 27, 2020, just two weeks after shut down, Sergeant Creasey began deliveries with over 30 families. He and his fellow deputies continue to bring food and medicine to 10 families on a regular basis.