MILTON — With limited social interaction being encouraged, volunteers from the Turbot Township Fire Company are offering to do grocery shopping for the most vulnerable community members.

“We are offering home-delivery service to any of our (township) residents who are age 60 and over, and for those who are disabled,” department President Jason Swallow said.

“We are trying to protect the older residents of the township and help those who can’t get out themselves, to make sure their needs are met,” he added.

For at least the next two weeks, he said department volunteers will pick up and deliver basic grocery items to those outlined.

Township residents 60 and older, and those who are disabled, can place a grocery order for delivery by contacting Swallow at 570-317-6672.

Orders will be delivered within 24 hours, and volunteers with the department will provide a receipt so that payment can be made at the time of delivery.

“We have protocols in place to protect both our members and the residents from disease transmission,” Swallow said. “Our members will be wearing gloves when they deliver, they will be wearing masks... We will try to eliminate our exposure to the residents as much as possible.”

In addition to delivering the grocery items to the most vulnerable community members, the department is also partnering with Arthur’s Pet Pantry to provide pet food to those who receive a grocery delivery and are also in need of nourishment for their pets.

Susan Straub, director of Arthur’s Pet Pantry, visited the fire department on Saturday afternoon to ask if the organization could provide pet food to the township residents served through the delivery program.

When a senior or individual with disability calls to request a grocery delivery, Straub said the fire department volunteers will be asking if the individual is also in need of food for their pets. If the answer is yes, Arthur’s Pet Pantry will provide the food.

Straub said all of pet food distributed through her organization is donated. While the organization’s supplies are holding steady now, she said more donations will be needed as the coronavirus pandemic subsides.

Arthur’s Pet Pantry provides pet food to those in need. Donations of pet food can be dropped off at PetValu and Brookpark Pet Supply, both in Lewisburg.

The idea to offer the grocery delivery service was presented to Swallow by a department member who learned the Elysburg Fire Department is offering the same service in its community.

“We have the means necessary to help out the community, that’s what we need to be doing in a time like this,” Swallow said.

“It’s really important for us to follow the guidelines that CDC has put out there, that local health care providers have put out there, to self isolate ourselves, stay away from groups,” he added. “We all need to do our part to get ahead of this.”

Staff writer Kevin Mertz can be reached at 570-742-9671 or email

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