Imagine… you are the parents of four young children, ages four through ten. One of you works as a chambermaid in a local motel dependent upon tourists, and the other works for a landscaper who has just lost several of his clients due to the economic squeeze. The landscaping company has just told you that your hours are now cut to three days a week and this week you will not work at all. You have an overdue utility bill of $203.58 and the lights are going to be turned off soon. What do you do?
Imagine…you are the single mother of four children, only one of whom is old enough to work. You have just lost your job and now must pay your monthly rent, utilities and other living expenses but there is just not enough to go around. $84.87 will keep the lights on. What do you do?
Imagine…you are a single Mom with two young children. You did have a job and made ends meet but you were laid off and now find that the electric company has sent its final notice before turning off the power. You have a job interview for next Monday and you are sure that you can "ace" it. You just have to get the $252.23 to keep the power on. What do you do?
We heard these stories from our friends at the Caridad Center (http://caridadcenter.org) in Boynton Beach, Florida. The Center was started in 1991 by Caridad Asencio, herself an immigrant from Cuba who settled in South Florida, and her dear friend Connie Berry, a local educator. Connie and Caridad began the Center to address the many difficulties facing the migrant workers who pick Florida’s fresh fruit and vegetables. The program has grown successfully since its inception and today enlists the help of hundreds of volunteers who provide excellent medical care, tutoring and general social services.
When Connie and the organization’s present director, Barbara Vilaseca, were in touch a few days ago they told us how difficult things have become since the recent economic slowdown. Despite a good solid foundation of supporters, the organization can no longer keep up with the emergency situations that seem to arise many times each day. Could the Good People Fund help?
The above stories (and others they shared) were about real people and they represent just a fraction of the many people who have suddenly found themselves in dire straights. Before this latest catastrophe, they made ends meet. It may have been difficult and they always lived with very little but there was always food on the table and a roof over their head. For a bit more than $600 four families were saved, perhaps permanently, maybe not. We were glad to be able to step in and help.