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Ferguson cake shop busy catching up after damage

Natalie's Cakes & More on South Florissant Road in Ferguson, shows sustained damage on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014, after a grand jury decided not to bring charges against Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown. Natalie DuBose, the owner, has been busy filling holiday cake orders to keep up despite the turmoil. Photo by Christian Gooden, cgooden@post-dispatch.com

Ferguson, Dellwood and St. Louis business owners and community leaders are hoping the current international attention on a Ferguson bakery damaged amid Monday’s rioting might lead to a worldwide fund-raising campaign for many other local businesses.

Natalie DuBose, the owner of Natalie’s Cakes and More, has so far received more than $250,000 in donations through the Internet crowd-sourcing site gofundme. The donations first came after a tearful photograph of DuBose surveying her damaged store on South Florissant Road was seen worldwide.

DuBose’s shop was one of dozens damaged Monday night after looting and rioting erupted in the wake of a St. Louis County grand jury decision recommending no charges against Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson who fatally shot Michael Brown on Aug. 9.

Community leaders are glad to see the attention, and further urging people to remember that other small business owners in the area are struggling. More than a dozen were set on fire. Others were looted and vandalized. And most have struggled with declining business due to a lack of foot traffic, compounded sometimes by road closures and having to board up their windows.

There are now a growing number of ways to help them. To donate online to a business or other community entity click on the following links:

Beauty World, heavily damaged on South Florissant Road.

Cathy’s Kitchen, restaurant on South Florissant.

Cose Dolci Bakery, on South Florissant.

El Palenque, Mexican restaurant damaged on South Florissant.

Faraci’s Pizza, on South Florissant.

Little Caesar’s, burned down North Florissant.

Natalie’s Cakes, local bakery damaged on South Florissant.

Dellwood Conoco, gas station burned down on West Florissant Avenue.

Fashions R Boutique, women’s boutique burned down on West Florissant.

Ferguson Market & Liquor, shop repeatedly looted and damaged on West Florissant.

Flood Christian Church, church attended by Michael Brown Sr. burned on West Florissant.

Sam’s Meat Market, local market repeatedly looted and damaged on West Florissant.

Solo Insurance Services, on West Florissant.

STL Cordless, mobile phone shop looted and damaged on West Florissant.

Hidden Treasures Antique Shop, on North Florissant.

To donate to a local business support group:

I love Ferguson, a nonprofit formed by Ferguson residents to help businesses rebuild.

North County Incorporated, to distribute funds to businesses affected across North County.

STL Together Fund, funds the St. Louis Regional Chamber’s charitable foundation for its Small Business Relief Program.

ONE Ferguson, also provides list of ways to donate to businesses.

To donate to a community support group:

Ferguson Municipal Public Library, which has remained open on days when schools closed and received more than $175,000 in donations.

Ferguson Beautification through Art, to fund art supplies for artists to paint murals on boarded up businesses.

HealSTL, community outreach program burned down on West Florissant burned.

Ferguson Youth Initiative, to increase youth community involvement in Ferguson.

The Vine Ferguson Community Fund, to support broad-based initiatives to begin to heal and grow by supporting children, commerce and the community.

Youth Jobs at Ferguson Farm School, to support youth empowerment jobs and programs at EarthDance farm, South Dade Ave.

United Way of Greater St. Louis is assessing needs in the Ferguson area to help create a long-range approach to help.

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Nancy Cambria is a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.