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Monday, February 6, 2023

Loaves & Fishes: Doing something about it

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A few years ago, while visiting the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, I purchased a blue tote bag with the words, “The Art of Doing Something About It” on the front. Those words really made me think. What if we all had an “it” – a cause, belief, or need we are passionate about? And then what if we all became devoted to doing something about it?

I actually think many people do and are making a huge difference in the lives of others through their efforts. It’s no secret what mine is: Loaves & Fishes.

I’m astonished that we are now serving more than 6,000 people a week – twice the number we were serving in January of this year. 1 in 5 in DuPage, Kane, Kendall, and Will Counties are living in poverty/low income. Many of our clients never had the chance to recover economically from the pandemic. Then rising inflation and gas prices simply exacerbated already trying times. Through the support of many generous people, we are providing healthy food and programs that promote self-sufficiency to all our clients. We’re not focused on just any food, but rather on healthy fruits and vegetables, whole grains, milk, and eggs.

Additionally, our CARES programs provide resources that help clients become more independent. One of the most effective is our Emergency Assistance program for rent or utilities. 98% of clients became more self-sufficient after receiving Emergency Assistance.

If you have a cause you are devoted to, good for you. Each of us doing our part is what makes a strong community, and the holidays are the perfect time to do so. If you haven’t been drawn to something and you’re looking for a way to help others, consider Loaves & Fishes. Whether you volunteer, hold a food drive, participate in our virtual food drive, contribute financially, or share our story with others, you’ll be “doing something about it.”

Oh, and the blue tote? With such an important message on it, this is one case where I’m happy to be left holding the bag!

Nancy Wiersum
Nancy Wiersumhttp://www.loaves-fishes.org/
Nancy Wiersum is Vice President of Advancement at Loaves & Fishes Community Services and can be contacted at nwiersum@loaves-fishes.org. Visit www.loaves-fishes.org for more information.

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