On Sunday, January 4, 2015, church member and chair of the Board of Directors of Tri-City Volunteers Doug Swint invited us to give generously to the Tri-City Volunteers Special Offering, which will be received during worship next Sunday, January 11.
You might think like I used to, living in a fairly affluent city like Fremont, that we don’t have a lot of people in need of food like other communities in the East Bay … But We Do! Many folks you meet are struggling (though you don’t necessarily see it) and having to make a decision between having a place for their family to live and having enough food to feed them. At Tri-City Volunteers we hear these stories everyday … and we Listen.
Tri-City Volunteers provides emergency food assistance to over 6,000 low-income families in Alameda County every month, mostly from Fremont! We distribute over 6 million pounds of food every year and we give them good food – over half of what we gave out in 2014 was fresh produce.
But we can’t do it without your help. Last year over 2000 volunteers joined us to pack and sort food and clothing. Financial contributions allowed us to start a mobile food pantry that serves 100 low income seniors twice each month, who don’t have access to transportation.
I have had the privilege of serving on the Board of Directors for the last 8 years and Chairperson for the last 5. For those of you newer to our church, Tri-City Volunteers is part of the legacy of Niles Congregational Church [and First Christian Church of Fremont], when a member [claimed by both congregations] named Grace Draper founded Tri-City Volunteers in 1970. Many of our members have carried the agency forward. Today we do what we do with 9 paid staff and (as I mentioned) many volunteers. Our folks are passionate and dedicated to helping people step out of poverty and maintain pride.
I wish you could meet on of our staff members in particular, named Tao, who has been with us for over 25 years. He was a client before starting and has always wanted to continue to give back. He is a real inspiration.
Next week our church will receive our special offering for Tri-City Volunteers. EVERY Dollar you contribute enables us to provide $6 dollars in food. It will also bring us closer to the day when no one in our community has to choose between going to bed hungry and paying their rent. We may not be able to always recognize a person in need, but TOGETHER we can do something to help!