With Johnnies closing in less than a week, Charlestown will be without a supermarket until the construction of Whole Foods is completed. In such little notice, the Townie Association quickly responded to the issue by starting a petition for shuttle services. As president of the Townie Association, I would like to thank all those who signed our petition and for your support.
When walking around Charlestown and knocking on doors to receive signatures, I witnessed the generosity of Charlestown come alive. Many neighborhoods do not have what we have: a community that cares. To hear the good news of neighbors quickly starting their own shuttle service or receiving emails and phone calls from neighbors offering their time to drive people to other local supermarkets so that others in need can put food on their tables was truly heart touching.
With the holidays fast approaching, Charlestown natives are quickly addressing the issue and thinking of others at this time. Melissa Doherty is organizing a grassroots carpool service for those who need rides to the grocery store. She currently has 15 volunteers who are ready to drive their neighbors when needed.
Mike Lewis created his own shuttle service that stops in many areas around Charlestown.
Another Townie, Alyse Fiamma, quickly organized her own grassroots shuttle service, but she chooses to focus on grocery shopping for her clients and then delivering the items to their homes instead.
Other Charlestown residents, such as Danny Ryan, Jennifer Fiddler and Kelly Garvey Pellagrini, have set the standard by offering to drive their neighbors as well. In many ways, the grassroots way is the most successful way to approach things. I applaud all of you for stepping up to the plate in such an urgent time of need.
This past week, Fr. Ronan’s (the pastor of Saint Mary-Saint Catherine of Siena Parish) homily was about generosity, about giving of one’s self. With the holidays drawing near, this is the perfect opportunity to be generous. There are more ways to be generous than donating money towards a cause. For example, offering your time to drive someone to the supermarket.
I am challenging you during this season of giving: if you have a car and are going to the grocery store, call your neighbor or knock on their door and ask if they would like to come.
If you know an elderly or disabled person, or someone who does not own a vehicle, offer them a ride to the supermarket. Ask them if there is anything they want you to pick up for them.
We often think of being generous as giving the extra things we have in life, but sometimes we can be generous with what we have; in this case it could simply asking your neighbor if they would like to join you as you shop at the local supermarket or picking up a few items for someone else while you are already there. I am confident that Charlestown can overcome issue on our own, but it starts with you.
As the holidays quickly approach us, please think of others in need. The reason why Charlestown is such a great community is because the people of Charlestown are always willing to help each other out. So when you are going to the grocery store this week, please think of your neighbors and ask if they need a lift. You will be doing someone a big favor, and in a sense will be doing something generous.
Charlestown Carpool and Shuttle Information
Grassroots Carpool Service—If you would like to volunteer with Melissa Doherty’s grassroots carpool service or you know someone that may need a ride to the supermarket store, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charlestown Shuttle Service—Offered by Mike Lewis, 617-388-9070. Available Tuesday through Saturday from 2-8 p.m. Please see designated pick-up locations below; picks up every 30 minutes. Cost: $10 round-trip service and drop-off at home.
- Main and Middlesex Streets (next door to Sovereign Bank) at the bus stop.
- Corner of Main and Green Streets (Citizens Bank).
- Corner of Warren and Winthrop Streets, in front of St. Mary’s Church.
- Corner of Bunker Hill and Lexington Streets.
- Medford and Tufts Streets, in front of the Newtowne Store.
(Please note: Shuttle service for shoppers only, no room for children and friends. Vehicle holds four people and groceries).
Also: There will be no shuttle service on Thursday, Nov. 22 and Friday, Nov. 23. Service will resume on Nov. 24.
Shop & Drop—Offered by Alyse Fiamma, 617-866-0325. Available Monday through Thursday after 2 p.m. Transportation to the store of your choice, $5 charge. Grocery shops for you and delivers it to your door.