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Good Neighbor Spotlight: Chattanooga community come together to help fellow neighbor get back on his feet

Written by Nick Brinkerhoff

In honor of September being Good Neighbor Month, we will be showcasing incredible stories of how neighbors are using Nextdoor to go above and beyond in their local communities. Have a story of your own? Send us an email at stories@nextdoor.com.

The Chattanooga Community Kitchen in Chattanooga, TN is a nonprofit that works to get vulnerable members of the community back on their feet, helping them combat hunger, homelessness, and other needs.

One of those community members was Roger S., a young man who turned to the Kitchen for help after learning that he needed to leave his current living situation in just a matter of days. Roger had not only himself, but his daughter, cat, and dog to look after, so one can imagine the panic he was in when he realized they’d all soon be homeless. 

He called the Chattanooga Community Kitchen, and luckily the organization had an opening in their family shelter for Roger and his daughter. Unfortunately, the Kitchen is unable to host pets, so Roger couldn’t bring his dog or cat with him during his stay. A local animal shelter was able to hold the animals for a few days, but they needed to think of a longer-term plan. That’s when Community Kitchen staff member Kathy L. turned to Nextdoor.

Knowing how important pets are to people’s families, Kathy wanted to find a way for Roger to eventually reunite with his pets. So she posted on Nextdoor to see if anyone in the community would be interested in fostering Roger’s cat and dog for the time being until Roger found stable housing. To her surprise, Kathy’s post received an overwhelming amount of responses from neighbors willing to foster the pets, but also pay for food and boarding if needed. Due to the response, Kathy and Roger were able to act quickly and get his pets in loving homes within a few days. The families that cared for the pets were in constant communication with Kathy and Roger, providing daily updates and ensuring Roger that his animals were in good hands.

Kathy is happy to report that Roger and his daughter are doing extremely well and have been reunited with their furry friends. With the help of the Chattanooga Community Kitchen, Roger was able to find a pet-friendly apartment and a new employment opportunity as a forklift driver from VW. It just goes to show that good things really do happen when neighbors start talking.

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