Before the pandemic hit the world and Skagway, food insecurity was already an issue. Food insecurity describes a household’s inability to provide enough food for every person to live an active, healthy life. Thirty four million Americans dealt with it in 2019. In a typical year, the Skagway Food Bank provided funds nine to 12 times a year. With the pandemic, 53 million Americans are dealing with food insecurity. As of this writing, we have had 56 requests for food assistance this year in Skagway.
Thankfully, many people had the foresight to see this issue coming and took steps to address it. For a few decades, the Community Cares Committee, made up of leaders from Presbyterian, Assembly of God, Catholic, The Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints and Life-Link Fellowship have administered the food bank to help those who faced unexpected hard times. Our account usually held between $1,000 and $5,000 each year from church donations and from members of the community and groups. With the lack of cruise ships coming, White Pass headed up a community fundraiser, knowing food was going to be an issue. With your generosity, encouraged by a matching grant, we brought in $5,365 at the end of that day. Community members have continued to give to the account as they were able. The municipality had us on their original proposal for CARES money and have given $125,000 so far to our efforts.
All of this to say, there is no reason that you should be experiencing food insecurity. There are ways to take that extra stressor and trauma out of this season of life. You just need to contact one of the members and we will arrange for you to have credit at the Fairway Market: $200 for an individual or $400 for 2 or more people that is expected to last at least two weeks.
There is also the food exchange at the Presbyterian Church Fellowship Hall (Green Building, 5th and Main), where non-perishable food is on the shelves and a refrigerator and freezer (donated by the Elks through a grant they received), can keep your extra garden vegetables or soup that you made too much of available to others. The Skagway Traditional Council partners with the USDA to bring Farm to Family Food Boxes to Skagway. Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would be interested in their help as well. Plus, there are always food stamps from the state. If you need help with any of these things, please do not hesitate to call. We want to help each other make it to May 2021! We do this by loving our neighbor as ourselves.
Ryan Mandeville: 973-2042
Ginny Cochran: 612-0313
Paul Taylor: 347-2683
Tim Steidel: 983-3163
Karla Ray: 612- 0901
Ray Leggett: 612-0332