Creating Stability in Tenuous Times
In August, a little girl walked into the large room at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church where MOM had set up our backpack distribution. She was holding her mother’s hand, walking very closely to her and shyly avoiding eye contact with the volunteers. Her mother checked in and a volunteer walked them through the aisles of backpacks to the kindergarten section and explained to the little girl, still half hidden behind her mother’s legs, that she could pick out any backpack she saw. The little girl peeked out, her eyes wide in wonder. After a nod of encouragement from her mother, she began to walk around the backpacks, her eyes moving over her possible choices until they settled on a pink backpack.
“Is that the one you’d like?” the volunteer asked.
The little girl nodded eagerly, and the volunteer handed it to her. She immediately slipped it on, excitement showing in her eyes. She skipped out, wearing her new backpack, prepared to start school with the supplies she needs to be successful.
While it hasn’t been the autumn many of us were hoping for, there have still been many small moments like this when we are able to see how our work makes a difference for neighbors in our community. In these moments, we feel especially grateful for the support of our community that makes our programs possible.
Although we had hoped to open to in-person shopping on October 1, under the direction of The Emergency Food Assistance Program, we had to push the date back. While disappointing for everyone, our first priority is to keep the vulnerable community we serve and our staff and volunteers safe. Besides continuing to distribute food using our drive-thru model and to provide funds and other support to prevent eviction, we have been able to restart our Senior Rides program and to launch Connections, a new housing program that will focus on people living in crowded doubled up living arrangements, which puts everyone in the household at risk of eviction. Despite the ongoing challenges, we remain confident that, with your support, we can continue to help neighbors in our community reach and maintain stability during this tenuous time as we build a stronger future together.
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