By Cassandra Spohn
As the pandemic began stretching longer into last summer, it was clear that it was not going away any time soon. Families, communities, and businesses alike began to see the effects of jobs and livelihoods lost, closures, and growing uncertainty and concern within the City of Parkland and beyond.
Enter Parkland resident Joy Milligan, a few of her friends and neighbors, and a vision to help others without judgment.
Unofficially, the Fish Mending Nets started one year ago when Milligan realized the need for goods, technology, food, furniture, and more across the communities of Broward, North Miami-Dade, and South Palm Beach counties.
The name stands for ‘Friends Inspiring and Sharing Hope’ comprised of five Parkland women several volunteers, they gather up what would otherwise be thrown out, and personally deliver goods to those in need throughout various communities.
Milligan, and other volunteers, began using social media as a resource not only to find people in need but accept donations, services, and more from the community. Then, with the help of Parkland City Commissioner Simeon Briar and his law firm, Fish Mending Nets obtained their 501c3 status last October.
“I always knew I wanted a non-profit,” said Milligan. “Everything lined up organically, including the board members and others that helped to create Fish Mending Nets. We are friends with different opinions, backgrounds, and beliefs, but we’ve come together with one common goal, to help.”
“Whatever comes in does not get declined,” said Milligan. “To one person, it’s nothing, but to someone else, it’s everything.”
In addition to clothing, food, technology, and monetary donations, Fish Mending Nets gratefully accepts donations in the form of moving vehicles, storage space, help with moves and pickups, and more.
“We’re here for whatever your need is,” said Tara Chue. “Do you know the phrase, ‘If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life?’ We just love what we do, and we love working together.”
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- Cassandra Spohn graduated from Otterbein University obtaining her degree in media relations and dance. She moved to south Florida in 2014 and now resides in Parkland with her husband and daughter.
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