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The facility distributed about 42 lunches to police officers, nurses, retail workers and more on July 31.

PMG PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Avamere at Sherwoods Sabrina Thompson hands a sack lunch to Arturo Garcia, a Sherwood police officer and the departments newest school resource officer, during a tribute to essential workeres held at the facilitys roundabout on July 31.  The roundabout at Avamere at Sherwood resembled a fast-food restaurant queue Friday, July 31, as essential workers drove up to the facility for a free sack lunch. Except no greasy fries with these meals.

"We have some chicken wraps," said Jeff Walker, a director of sales and outreach at the assisted living and memory care facility. "We tried to be like health conscious with this one. We have protein bars, we have a piece of fruit in there as well – apple, orange or banana – and Gatorade."

Walker said the idea was to give those workers a chance to break up the monotony of the day and pay tribute to essential workers by offering some delicious food in a bagged lunch.PMG PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Avameres Jeff Walker distributes a sack lunch to an essential worker.

He said the facility's chef made up a total of 50 lunches and staff helped assemble them with cars beginning to trickle through shortly after noon.

One of the those who pulled up was Arturo Garcia, a Sherwood police officer and the department's newest school resource officer.

"I think it's great," Garcia said of the lunch. "It's a change of pace and at the same time you get to see people you don't usually see."

(Garcia formerly worked at the Safeway branch of U.S. Bank, pointing out he already knows many of the parents in the community.)

Garcia said the community has shown its support during COVID-19 with many residents dropping off goodies ranging from beverages to donuts at the police station.

"And we're grateful for it," he said, noting it's especially meaningful during these tough times when officers might not seem appreciated.

Throughout the afternoon, other cars trickled through the roundabout as well as Avamere employees Sabrina Thompson and Kristina Hampton helped hand out the lunches.

Thompson said it was important for the facility to do "whatever we can do to give back." PMG PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Jeff Walker, director of sales and outreach at Avamere at Sherwood, an assisted living and memory care facility, displays the sack lunches handed out to essential workers on July 31.

Hampton said Avamere hosted a barbecue in the spring to pay tribute to essential workers as well.

"We want to do events like this for the community as often as possible," said Walker.

By the time Friday's event was over, 42 lunches were distributed, something Walker described as "pretty awesome."

"We had Walmart greeters. We had some people from restaurants come through," he said. "It ended up being quite a bit of workers different workers from different jobs." It was really cool, we had a lot more nurses come through and more police officers as well."

He said Avamere hopes to do something similar again in the future.

"We really enjoy doing these kinds of things," he said. "We really enjoy the community and giving back as much as we can."PMG PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Sabrina Thompson and Jeffrey Walker, Avamere at Sherwood employees, get ready to distribute sack lunches to essential workers on July 31.


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