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Caught in the Act of Kindness - August 2021

Celebrating individuals, groups and organizations that share their time, talent and treasure to meet the needs in our community.


I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples. – Mother Teresa

For consideration in Caught in the Act of Kindness, email an example of how an individual,
group or organization went above and beyond to help those in need to
If you have a related high-resolution photo, please include that as well.

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Hope for Haiti has secured in-kind gifts of essential supplies from trusted partners, the first shipment of which went out within days of the disaster. It has also reopened its office and Infirmary St. Etienne in Les Cayes to provide essential medical services and clean water to members of the community; helped FONTEN, an occupational therapy & rehabilitation center located in Les Cayes by having one of their drivers use a Hope for Haiti vehicle to bring supplies and occupational therapy student volunteers to the center to assist with recovery efforts; and procured tarps to be added to the emergency kits on hand for distribution within partner communities. In Naples, FL, staff and volunteers, led by Hope for Haiti Gift-in-Kind Director Yvette Ebb, packed pallets of critical medical supplies from the Naples Community Hospital (NCH) warehouse to be sent to Les Cayes.​

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SWFL Children’s Charities Inc. has presented $1.2 million to help build the new SWFL Children’s Charities Eye Institute of Golisano Children’s Hospital. Collins Vision is also a major donor.

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Artis—Naples announced that Ellen and David Ryan have pledged to match all donations made through Dec. 31, 2021, dollar-for-dollar up to $1 million, in support of the Naples Philharmonic.


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Naples Zoo has received a $1 million pledge from David and Jerri Hoffmann, on behalf of the entire Hoffmann family, dedicated to helping complete the zoo’s $25 million “Roaring into Our Future Capital Campaign.”

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The Immokalee Foundation received a $500,000 Workforce Development Grant from Collier County for its Career Pathways Learning Lab, where students are supervised on site by industry professionals.

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Charity for Change students have donated over $140,000 to 100 charity partners. Charity for Change is a curriculum that helps children develop their character by learning about and doing activities focused on character traits such as kindness, tolerance and responsibility. They collectively vote on a charity to receive the money earned by doing these activities.


Gen. James Dozier, seated, and standing from left, Gary Bryant, Sarah Owen and Ron Penn


Collaboratory has announced the creation of the General James L. Dozier JROTC Support Fund to assist various Lee County JROTC training programs and their activities to enhance the future leadership of the United States Armed Forces.

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Child’s Path received a $35,000 grant from the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation to help the organization provide partial scholarships to children of low-income, working parents who struggle to afford child care. In addition, Child's Path announced that the Taranto Family Foundation provided a $10,000 donation to cover the costs of the digital curriculum in all four Child's Path early learning centers.

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Valerie's House awarded $30,000 in first-ever scholarships to graduating high school seniors who have participated in its program, including Marcel Garcia of Naples (pictured with Valerie’s House CEO Angela Melvin), who graduated from Gulf Coast High School and plans to attend Florida Gulf Coast University; Ashley Zimmerman of Naples, who graduated from Naples High School and plans to attend Southern Union State Community College in Opelika, Ga.; Stori McDougall-Eva of Fort Myers (pictured with Valerie’s House CEO Angela Melvin), who graduated from Canterbury School and attends Boston College; Shane Spotz of Cape Coral, who graduated from Cape Coral High School and plans to attend the University of Florida in Gainesville; and Austin Wolin of Punta Gorda, who graduated from Island Park High School and plans to attend Florida SouthWestern College in Fort Myers.

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Barbara’s Friends has awarded two scholarships to local high school seniors providing a higher education at a college of their choice. Michelle Glarum, a senior at North Fort Myers High School is living with sickle cell disease. Mallory Rice is a brain cancer survivor and student at Cypress Lake High School.

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Taylor Morrison.jpg

Youth Haven Inc. has received a $5,000 grant from the PNC Foundation. Additionally, $1,000 was raised by the Taylor Morrison team to help purchase necessary daily supplies for children and teens.


Golisano Children's Museum of Naples has expanded its partnership with STARability Foundation’s Trailblazer Academy vocational program and STAR*Made Studio. In the past, Trailblazers have worked alongside CMON staff members to assist with various projects. Now, program members come to the museum on Wednesdays, when it is closed to the public, to participate in organizational, sorting, stocking and custodial tasks. The museum will be adding handcrafted items created by participants in the foundation’s STAR*Made Studio to its store inventory, including candles, bracelets and Christmas ornaments.

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Sunshine Ace Hardware has donated classroom and cleaning supplies to Boys & Girls Club of Collier County.

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Roy’s Restaurant in The Promenade of Bonita Bay partnered with Community Cooperative by hosting a food drive to help local families in need.

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