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Businesses and Pantries Providing Food, Supplies for Government Workers in Need

CENTRAL IOWA -- Local businesses and pantries want government workers affected by the shutdown to know they are here for them.

“When they start talking about the federal government, it’s like a far off entity. They don’t think about it being their neighbors and their community, but it is. The federal government, it’s Ankeny. There’s people here that work for the government. So I felt like those were my neighbors,” said Anna Woodcock, owner of Brown Dog Bakery.

Brown Dog Bakery in Ankeny is offering to help those in central Iowa with dogs and cats who are affected by the government shutdown.

“I don’t want my neighbors to be worried about feeding their pets because we don’t know how long it’s going to go. I mean, people can probably go for a few weeks. They might be able to go for a month depending on how much they’ve got saved up, but at some point if we haven’t fixed this, they might need help,” Woodcock said.

She said that all people need to do is call the store at 515-964-7177 or message them on Facebook and she will be able to get anyone cat litter, food, treats and other supplies.

Treats on a Leash in Ames is also providing the same services and ask that those who need help to message them on Facebook.

Humans also need supplies, too. That’s where Bidwell Riverside Center comes in with both food and hygiene items.

“We accept everyone. We don’t have any zip code restrictions. We don’t have any income restrictions. Everyone is truly welcome here at Bidwell and we can actually give them food every seven days,” Bidwell Community Outreach Supervisor Amie Turk said.

Turk said they see about 4,500 people per month and they are prepared if that increases during the shutdown, but they always welcome donations of food and especially hygiene products.

“With food stamps even people can purchase food with food stamps, but they can’t necessarily purchase shampoo or soap so those items are luxury,” Turk said.

Bidwell Distribution Center Supervisor Shelby Braniger said all you need to bring is an ID.

And if you have children, bring a birth certificate or insurance card that includes the names and birth dates of each child.

“I want them to know they shouldn’t feel guilty if they need it they should come and that’s the whole reason why we are here,” Braniger said.

For more information, visit the Bidwell Riverside Center website.