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70-year-old begs for help after grocery deliveries stop: ‘It’s very hard’

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RICHMOND, Va. -- Shirley Mitchell has lived in Richmond's Hillside Court public housing complex for 18 years.

The 70-year-old, who receives assistance through Senior Connections, is upset that she can no longer receive groceries delivered to her home.

The non-profit agency offers home and community-based services for older adults, caregivers and persons with disabilities in the Richmond and the surrounding counties.

Shirley Mitchell

Shirley Mitchell

“I suffer from chronic back pain and two bad knees right, so it’s very hard for me to move around to do anything,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell said Senior Connections has been delivering groceries to her for five years, but stopped about a month ago.

“The man who usually deliver my groceries to me got sick,” Mitchell explained.

Shirley Mitchell

Shirley Mitchell

But Mitchell said the group also expressed concern over the safety of her neighborhood.

“Where I’ve been living, it’s been quiet,” Mitchell said. “I mean there’s nowhere [that is] safe… I felt insulted.”

​That's when Mitchell called the CBS 6 Problem Solvers.

After CBS 6 reporter Sandra Jones reached out to Senior Connections, Mitchell received a bag of groceries.

Patrick D. Hickey, Senior Connections Services Manager, sent this statement:

Ms. Mitchell has received delivery of shelf-stable items from Bainbridge Community Ministry, delivered by a Senior Connections staff member. Senior Connections could provide a Care Coordinator to work with Ms. Mitchell, should she desire it, on identifying alternatives to improve her circumstances. We have been pleased to work with Bainbridge Community Ministry for 8+ years assisting with supplemental food deliveries to needy Seniors. Recently, the volunteer who was making the deliveries has been affected by health problems, and it is uncertain whether he will be able to return to doing this task. As with all of our professional staff, the staff member who has been working with Bainbridge Community Ministry on this project has experienced increasing demands in her job duties. And it is increasingly difficult to find volunteers to travel to all neighborhoods in the City. Senior Connections will be working with Bainbridge Community Ministry to identify an organization to carry on this worthwhile task.

Mitchell was elated about the delivery.

“I thank ya’ll for getting involved in helping me. At least he bought me something," Mitchell said. "And I had to call you. I didn’t have no choice."

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