Giving back is not only good for your community, it’s good for the soul. We are so lucky here on the Emerald Coast to have so many big hearted non-profit organizations serving our area. However, the heartbeat of these organizations relies on the people of our community – without the hard work, helping hands and time served, the heart stops. Are you interested in giving back? Let’s shine a little light on a couple of our area’s charitable organizations.

Alalaquaaqua Animal Refuge

Have you ever made the trip to Freeport to visit this beautiful place? If not, you need to put it on your list of things to do as soon as possible. This organization amazes me on a regular basis with its relentless spirit to help animals (seriously, all animals) in need.

Their Story

Alaqua Animal Refuge is a no-kill facility that sits on a 10-acre farm in Freeport, FL. Alaqua began in 2007, providing shelter for just a few dogs and cats until they could be placed in loving homes. They have now grown to providing shelter for over 250 animals including dogs, cats, pigs, donkeys and a variety of other farm animals.

Alaqua operates solely on donations and funds raised by local fund raising events, with operational costs adding up to around $50,000 per month. Alaqua provides its animals with only the highest quality of care, stopping at nothing to improve the life of any animal brought in.

How Can I Help?

As Alaqua prepares to relocate to a larger refuge, they need our help more than ever. Here are some ways for you to give back –

  • Make a tax deductible donation
  • Consider a corporate sponsorship
  • Volunteer your time or talent
  • Contribute to Alaqua’s Wish List
  • Donate needed pet supplies
  • Do you have a compassion for animals? Alaqua Animal Refuge may be the perfect fit for you to give back to our community.

Food for Thought

It can be very disheartening to discover how many children right here in our community are going hungry. Have you ever done the research? Prepare yourself. However, our community is headed in foodforthoughtthe right direction with organizations like Food for Thought, helping to fight child hunger here on the Emerald Coast since 2010.

Their Story

“It all started with a mom’s desire to connect her young children to the needs of their community. After seeking out a number of recommendations for volunteer opportunities, Tiffanie Shelton, Food For Thought Outreach Founder and President, found herself in the principal’s office of a local elementary school and learned there were children who, when away from school provided meals, did not have access to food. In that moment, Food For Thought Outreach was created.”

 Their Mission

The mission of Food for Thought is to remove the negative impacts of hunger, and empower a child to get the most out of their education and development by providing them weekly access to healthy, easy to prepare meals. Food for Thought provides backpacks full of healthy meals and snacks to children in need. Serving 15 schools in Okaloosa and Walton counties, they provide backpacks for over 750 students each week. Can you imagine the amount of work that goes into that?

How Can I Help?

It takes a village to keep this organization running, so there are plenty of opportunities for lending a helping hand to this organization.

  • Food donations – shopping list
  • Monetary donations
  • Become a new volunteer – sign up documentation
  • Consider a sponsorship
  • Head to Happy Hour at Travinia on the 1st Thursday of the month – 20% of all sales goes to Food for ThoughtDoes this sound like a cause that you would like to be a part of? Contact Food for Thought and start giving back to our community today.

Are you new to the area and ready to become a part of one of our beautiful communities along the Emerald Coast? With extensive knowledge of communities all along the Emerald Coast, Melissa Clements can help you get acquainted and find the perfect home in the right community for you. Contact her today with any questions that you may have.