New Local Charity, ‘411 Cares,’ Aims to Bring Residents and Public Servants Together

411 Cares serving lunch to Haverhill firefighters during the last year. (Courtesy photograph.)

Out of the current health pandemic, a new local charity has formed and it is already busy serving meals to first responders and veterans.

Known as “411 Cares,” the organization is the brainchild of Dee O’Neil and Michael Malvers. O’Neil tells WHAV the charity was founded as the pandemic began and has a simple purpose.

“We had a meeting March 7 and, pretty much, the topic for this meeting was how to bring the people and public servants and police and fire departments together,” O’Neil explains.

The duo, which also operates several community information pages on Facebook, first worked with Merrimack Valley Hope Mission to make and distribute protective face masks. When Daphnee Alva from Tufts Health Care inquired about the facial coverings for their members, she liked what she saw and heard. Now a new teammate, she brought in her husband and his business, Fleur Cuisine, and they delivered 30 meals to Haverhill firefighters at the various fire stations.

“The reaction was great. It was well taken. The union people put it on their Facebook page with a big ‘Thank You.’ We’re planning to look into the police department next,” she says.

Bringing in another partner, We Care Charity of Salem, N.H., the expanding group began serving meals for residents at two other Haverhill institutions. “They been getting, seven-days-a-week, full lunches delivered to the Y and (Veterans Northeast Outreach Center) VNOC. I believe the Y is 80, and 78 at Veterans Outreach Center.”

Next up, 411 Cares plans to distribute hygiene bags to both YMCA residents and veterans.

“Toothpaste, deodorant, razors for all the residents at the VNOC house on Main Street and to the YMCA. When I asked them what their immediate need was, that was one of the things he suggested in addition to the food which we were already giving,” she notes.

411 Cares is in the process of creating a formal nonprofit corporation to continue serving the Merrimack Valley and southern New Hampshire.

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