According to The Storehouse of Collin County Director Of Communications And Culture Benjamin Skye,
When you think of Collin County, perhaps Toyota or The Star or Legacy West come to mind as representations of a flourishing community. However, one in six households (16.1%) and one in five children (21.6%) are impacted by food insecurity in Collin County, and COVID-19 only exaggerates the need.
At The Storehouse, our mission is to “feed, clothe, and care as neighbors in one community.” We operate a food pantry that serves over 1,000 families a month, a clothing closet that provides over 4,000 garments monthly to individuals of all ages, and a relational program that provides a listening ear and connects our neighbors to additional resources in the community. Our holistic approach to caring for our neighbors allows us to build trust and offers a safe space to share other challenges they might be facing.
COVID-19 has provided The Storehouse with an opportunity to better understand the neighbors we serve. Since March, we have seen our numbers rise from an average of 125 families served per distribution to upward of 500 families weekly. Our neighbors represent the diversity of our community, with 85 percent of those who visit the pantry speaking Spanish as their first language.
One such person is Andrea, a bilingual neighbor who began visiting our food pantry a year ago. Having recently moved to Dallas, Andrea was making a fresh start in a new community. She was grateful to receive food, clothing, and counseling support from The Storehouse. “I so appreciate how The Storehouse volunteers treated me with dignity and respect. They always make me feel so welcomed and remind me that there is no shame in asking for help.” At one of her visits to the pantry, Andrea shared her passion for serving others and asked a staff member about opportunities to serve during the COVID-19 crisis. “I realized that I could use my knowledge of the Spanish language to help welcome Spanish-speaking neighbors to The Storehouse and it has brought me such joy to help.”
Volunteers like Andrea, who know what it’s like to be in our neighbors’ shoes, are uniquely positioned to help their fellow neighbors. The funds we raise this North Texas Giving Day will not only go toward providing food, clothing, and caring support for our neighbors, but also toward equipping and training volunteers to “give back” to their community. Additionally, these gifts allow us to continue innovating and improving our processes to better serve our neighbors.
In the last few months, we have seen many families who never imagined they would need to come to a food pantry. People are hungry, and they are hungry every day. Your gift on North Texas Giving Day not only helps to provide food for their tables, it also restores hope and provides relief during a challenging time, and often, as in the case of Andrea, inspiration to give back. Help us create a community where neighbors can thrive and support one another. Thank you for giving on North Texas Giving Day!
* Graphic and photo provided by The Storehouse Of Collin County
In 11 years, Communities Foundation of Texas’ North Texas Giving Day has pumped more than $290 million into the North Texas community. In 2019, more than $50 million was raised through more than 169,000 gifts benefiting over 2,988 area nonprofits.