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Photo by: Sarah Wilson - Proceeds from all 14 Central Florida Jeremiah's locations' sales on Monday, June 20, will be donated to victims.
Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Jun. 16, 2016 2 years ago

Winter Park businesses donate proceeds to Pulse shooting victims

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Businesses step up
by: Sarah Wilson Staff Writer

If you know of any other Winter Park or Maitland business or organization hosting fundraisers for Pulse shooting victims and their families, email [email protected] or [email protected] to be added to this story online.

Registering for a race, purchasing an art print, fostering a four-legged friend or enjoying a cup of ice cream can all be done for a good cause this week, as local businesses look to giveback to the victims of Sunday’s Pulse nightclub shooting.

When Anna Bond doodled a quick sketch of an orange in the shape of a heart, the word “Orlando” printed cleanly beneath it, and posted it on Instagram in the hours after the attack, she didn’t expect much of a reaction. The owner of Rifle Paper Co. in Winter Park was just doing what she does everyday, creating something from her heart.

The image would be liked more than 17,000 times on Instagram, and shared more than 200 times on Facebook. Commenters urged the paper shop to sell the print and donate its profits to help victims. So, Rifle’s Director of Communications Amanda Forbes Mestdagh said, that’s exactly what they’re doing.

“[We] thought it was a great way to give back,” she said.

The print is now on sale at both the store’s Winter Park storefront in Hannibal Square, and online at http://bit.ly/RifleOrlando. All proceeds from the sale of the print through June 24 will be donated to victims and families through the National Compassion Fund. You’ll also see versions of the print at the register at Black Bean Deli, where jars will be set up to take donations to help the Orlando victims.

On Monday, June 20, giving back is as easy as ordering a cup of your favorite Italian ice. Jeremiah’s locations across the state will donate all net proceeds from their sales on Monday to Equality Florida’s Pulse GoFundMe account.

If you’re looking to runoff those ice-creamy calories for a good cause, Track Shack is donating a portion of the funds raised at the Watermelon 5K on Park Avenue on July 4 to the cause. Visit trackshack.com to register, and to learn about additional ways the business is looking to raise money to give back.

Also on Park Avenue, fair-trade shop Ten Thousand Village is donating a portion of their sales this week to support victims and families.

The Winter Park Health Foundation committed $100,000 to address community needs in the aftermath of the Pulse tragedy. The funds will be donated to the OneOrlando Fund established by the City of Orlando and administered by the Central Florida Foundation.

Judy Charuhas, co-founder of Winter Park Lost Pets, has her priorities set on helping the four-legged friends of those killed or injured in the attack.

“One of my first thoughts was, what about these people’s pets who are at home?” she said. “These people went out to party and never came back.”

Since she posted a call for help on Facebook to see who would be interested in fostering or adopting pets in need after the shooting, the status has been shared more than 6,000 times. Between Facebook and her email inbox, she said she’s had 220,000 offers of help coming in from across the country. So far no pets in need have been identified, but she’s ready with a spreadsheet of available resources when and if one does in the coming days, weeks or months. To be added to the list, email [email protected]

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