Wednesday, December 03, 2008

AIDS Food Pantry in Dallas Needs Help.

This is something I just received. Since I lived in Dallas, and came out in Dallas, I wanted to post this for readers who might want to help them out.
Resource Center of Dallas' (RCD) AIDS Food Pantry is being forced to move from their location after almost 25 years. Many of their clients do not even have the money to take the bus to get their groceries now, so their fear is where the pantry will move to. Even with an end of January extension given, RCD says donations are coming in slower than expected and the initial $25,000 moving budget is expected to increase. The current 20 year old refrigeration equipment will not be able to make the move to a new location, according to an assessment from a refrigeration expert, forcing the pantry to buy a replacement. And once the moving expenses are met, additional money will be needed to buy food for the Center's clients during this time of year. From November through January, the Center traditionally sees an overall 30% increase in food needs with their 2,456 clients of the food programs – and those numbers were in better economic times.

PLEASE donate TODAY. No gift or help is too small.
Online: https://npo.networkforgood.org/Donate/Donate.aspx?npoSubscriptionId=1000661&code=HLM09

Or you can send your donations to:
Resource Center of Dallas
2701 Reagan Street
PO Box 190869
Dallas TX 75219-0869
(214) 528-0144


A personal visit to visit the pantry allowed me to see firsthand the work they are doing. The visit was full of emotions. A long line of people waiting outside a backroom door from a parking lot, hidden from the public, each with smiles on their face, talking with each other and the pantry employees, but I could not help but focus on the pain they must be masking. Each waited their turn to walk through a very small modest corner-grocery-store atmosphere, complete with small two-tier shopping carts. People bumped into each other - only about a 12 people maximum at a time are allowed in the entire room.

A plaque proudly hangs top center commerating 1989, the date this small 4 door refrigerated/freezer was presented as a gift to the Pantry. Milk and some cold items such as small desserts, burritos and individual items are available but there is not enough room to house frozen items contributed. So those meals are now distributed through another program (Hot Meals) through RCD, who started this food pantry almost 25 years ago. A freestanding 2 door refrigerator held some fresh deli items donated by local markets, but due to limited space these items are on a first come first serve basis, and the small case was almost empty just in the short time I was there.

A supervisor, who has worked for the pantry 6 years, told me how contributions are used and how she is able to leverage financial donations through the local food bank compared to the average spending of a person going to a local grocery. If I, as an individual, purchased a can of vegetables that cost a dollar, she can use that same dollar with the local food bank at a comparable rate of .14 per can to my 1.00, buying 7 cans of vegetables to my one. Grocery stores have been incredible with their donations, but it appears only to be chains within their immediate area.

The hot meals program, also run through Resource Center of Dallas, was at one time receiving annual funding from the Ryan White Care Act program however these federal funds have been cut, eliminating the $250,000 federal funding which was the majority of their annual budget over the last 18 months. This budget cut is jeapordizing stand alone food programs used to feed many of the same clients of the food pantry, a daily hot nutritious meal. In order to qualify for the pantry and hot meals program, people must meet a poverty level of 300% below the national level. 300% below!

When asked if items were given for traditional Thanksgiving dinners, the answer was more heartbreaking. With funding less than a shoestring-budget people, who in years past had received small turkeys and trimmings, would this year be receiving a small canned ham, store price of $7. The next time you shop, please go look at how small a $7 canned ham is.

Money is tight for everyone with the turn of our national economical state. As I write this, there is a segment on CNN talking to the founder of an Atlanta food bank echoing this sentiment for mainstream food banks across the nation. Donations are down and the need is increasing. His food bank is local to Atlanta, and not specific to this even smaller group of a forgotten people.

We must make sure that those in need in our community are taken care of.

PLEASE donate TODAY. No gift or help is too small.
Online: https://npo.networkforgood.org/Donate/Donate.aspx?npoSubscriptionId=1000661&code=HLM09

Or you can send your donations to:
Resource Center of Dallas
2701 Reagan Street
PO Box 190869
Dallas TX 75219-0869
(214) 528-0144




Join The Impact-Dallas' Food & Christmas Card Drive has officially begun. We need you NOW! Want to talk equality? Let your heart speak for you!

1. Before December 10th, while you're making out your Christmas or Holiday cards, please send a very special one to our friends at the AIDS Food Pantry and be sure to include a nice crisp $20. This year the food pantry is trying to find a new home plus find funds to meet this already increasing time of year.

Read why this Food Pantry was selected by us to support during this Food Drive: http://jointheimpact.wetpaint..com/page/Dallas

There are over 1000 who benefit from this Food Pantry alone, and 2456 in the 2 programs through Resource Center of Dallas (RCD). They need money to help buy food. Let's see if we can't send enough Christmas cards with our donations so EVERY person receives a heartfelt message from us!

2. Resource Center of Dallas/Food Pantry

2701 Reagan Street

PO Box 190869

Dallas TX 75219-0869

Be sure to sign your card "With love, From , JTI-Dallas

3. But wait! Now please reach out to as many people as you can. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, neighbors, high schools colleges and universities, florists, bakers, mechanics, professors, children's teachers and schools. Print or copy/paste this page and post/email/hand it out. Can't afford much? Your voice could be worth $20 + the number of people you tell! So use it!

Read their story here from our Dallas Team. http://jointheimpact.wetpaint.com/page/Dallas

BahHumBug but still want to spend your dough? Click here: https://npo.networkforgood.org/Donate/Donate.aspx?npoSubscriptionId=1000661&code=HLM09


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