SYMMES TOWNSHIP, Ohio — During the coronavirus pandemic, so many people have worked from home – but frontline and essential workers can’t do that. They have to go in to work and help all of us.
That’s one reason some Tri-Staters in late January decided to say thanks by expanding a sweet movement that’s sweeping the country.
In a garage in Symmes Township, a mini-bagging brigade gets hundreds of cookies ready for delivery. It’s actually part of a national movement started by two dads from Pennsylvania that turned into something they called Cookies for Caregivers.
“I read about Jeremy Uhrich and and Scott McKenzie in a magazine,” Cookies for Caregivers Cincinnati chapter co-founder Missy Greenberg said. “And when I read about them, I knew right away I wanted to be a part of this and start a Cincy chapter."
When Greenberg and co-founder Bryna Miller got started on Facebook, they never imagined they’d be starting a local cookie craze. Just five weeks in, they have 175 bakers.
People volunteer to bring the cookies to them, where they package and box the goodies for frontline and essential workers across the Tri-State.
“These are going to Children’s Hospital Anesthesia Department tomorrow,” Bryna Miller said, gesturing to a stack of boxes.
The two women said they’re spreading joy one cookie at a time – and showing all those people who’ve taken care of patients and kept things going – how valued they are.
“It gives me joy because when we deliver, we see the smile it brings to people and they’re so thankful to be acknowledged,” Miller said.
In tough pandemic times, it’s something fun and good to do – perhaps that’s why their baking ranks grew so fast. The baking boom experienced by the group makes for a brisk delivery time. Staff at the Sirkin, Kruger and Associates dental offices appreciated the surprise sweets.
“It means a lot when other people appreciate you,” dental assistant Nina Wickemeier said.
And that old wives' tale about dentists not eating cookies turned out to be false.
“Even in the dental field we love sweets. Just brush afterwards,” dental hygienist Emily Nutley said.
Volunteers are asked to bake four dozen, but they ask for no nuts because of allergies. No messy frosting, either -- painted on royal icing works just fine.
The cookie ladies also said donations would really help, too. They buy all the labels, boxes and bags for the cookies to be delivered right now.
The pair said there’s no dough in this dough – just the possibility that a batch of cookies will make folks smile.