In a town where the average household income is nearly half of what the U.S. average household income is and the poverty level is pushing 40%, resources such as community food banks can be a huge help.
Now, what if you were told that the town I was just referencing was a town that you called home?
As a town, Ellensburg has struggled for at least two years to meet the U.S. average household income by almost 50%. This number is alarming. But have no fear, FISH Community Food Bank is here to make sure that everyone in our community goes to sleep with a full and content stomach.
FISH Community Food Bank has had many food drives over the years where they have received generous amounts of food from local residents. On almost a daily basis, FISH Community Food Bank receives food donations in addition to the food supplied by federal programs through the USDA. However, FISH Community Food Bank needs more than just food donations in order to stay open and running–they need money.
The money that is donated can go farther than what you would be able to at a grocery store. I say this because food banks order and buy in bulk; with the nonprofit discount they receive in this process, they are able to make a dollar spread. This cash donation is also used to buy the perishable items that you cannot donates such as milk, fruits, and vegetables. Without this money, it is nearly impossible for food banks to provide a healthy meal.
Let us not forget that FISH Community Food Bank, and all other food banks, are a business and run like one. Heating, gas, electrical all need to be paid for by the end of the month.
So, can the food drives and donate money instead
In a time of true chaos and fear, there are companies in the United States that are desperately trying to show that we are not divided. Airbnb, a company where you can list and rent houses, condos, and apartments for a short period of time. CEO of Airbnb, Brian Chesky, expressed his concern for the recent “Muslim ban” by “[providing] free housing to refugees and anyone not allowed in the US. Stayed tuned for more, contact me if urgent need for housing” through Airbnb.
The “Muslim ban” includes a 90 day period where refugees and citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries are banned from entering (and returning) to the United States. Families are now being separated, doctors are not allowed to come back home after a business trip, and most left with no place to go. That is what makes Airbnb so great. Brain Chesky is making an awful experience a little less awful.
It has been less than two weeks since Donald Trump took office… and it seems more unreal than ever. In the past twelve days, we have seen trump do surprising and not-so-surprising things. His first Twitter rant since being elected was directed towards the press and the supposed “false” claims that the crowd size at his inauguration was about half the size of former President Obama inauguration. This wasn’t so surprising.
In a promise to “make America great again”, may we remember why America was so great in the first place. People from all walks of life, coming together, to live united and free.
With all of the uncertainty of where this country is going, it is almost calming to know that there are big companies in the United States that believe in moving forward and taking a stand for what is right.