We're all feeling stressed-out by the coronavirus pandemic. And we're worried about ourselves, our finances, our loved ones and our economy.
But as crazy as life is for us, many of our friends and neighbors are much worse and in immediate, critical danger. Millions in West and Central Floridians are now unemployed, through no fault of their own. And 1.3 million people have exhausted savings, can't pay bills and now don't have enough food to eat. That includes families with 247,000 children as well as 741,000 seniors who are all going hungry.
The scope of the suffering is staggering but unfortunately the worst is yet to come. Our businesses say the old jobs won't be back for months. So many of the hungry don't know how they can make do until then. And millions more are expected to join them after one-time government stimulus checks run dry. The next several months are expected to be the hardest and worst ever in the lives of many our local families and citizens.
And this hurts us all. Our economy can't recover when so many workers are too hungry to look for jobs. And we're sabotaging our future when so many children are too hungry to learn.
We're fearful for what all of these things mean to the people and community we love. And we won't accept that it has to happen here. So, we have a solution to turn it all around.
We are The Rotary Clubs of West and Central Florida. And in cooperation with Feeding Tampa Bay and numerous community businesses, we can provide five meals to a hungry family for just $1. So, with your help, we're going to provide one million meals to our friends and neighbors.
We’re going to give our neighbors a hand to pull them through this horribly tough spot. We’re going to protect and preserve our community and help rebuild our economy. And we're going to come out on the other side of this, together.
The riots happening in our country are frightening. Hungry people are desperate people, and desperate people sometimes act in ways they never would otherwise. But our community can help. We have the means to restore our fellow citizens' dignity by allowing them to provide food for their families. We must help them so that we can ALL RECOVER TOGETHER.
But none of this will happen without your help. So please donate today and your money will go immediately to a person in desperate need right now. Every dollar helps so much.
Thank you, on behalf of the hungry and our entire community!
Questions and Answers
How much of my donation goes to Feeding Tampa Bay and the hungry?
100% of your donation goes to Feeding Tampa Bay. The Rotary Club provides its work on a free/volunteer basis and does not take any money. Additionally, GoFundMe also provides its service for free. (You can support them with a voluntary donation if you choose).
Charity watchdog Charity Navigator awarded Feeding Tampa Bay its highest overall rating of 4 out of 4. They report that 98.9 cents of every dollar is spent on programs and services that it delivers, and it has earned a 100 (out the 100) rating for "accountability and transparency". For more information, see the Charity Navigator profile here .
Does my donation really help these hungry people?
Yes and maybe even more than you realize. Here's what one recipient, Rosie, said:
Has anything been said about this problem of hunger in our local news (and how many are affected)?
Sadly, yes. This is from the Tampa Bay Times on May 27th 2020 . The article was called: "1.3 Million Local People Now 'Food Insecure,' warns Feeding Tampa Bay".
"Feeding Tampa Bay estimates that the number of “food insecure” people in its 10-county region has risen from 600,000 to more than 1.3 million during the pandemic. Food insecurity is he defined as lacking regular access to affordable, nutritious food.
And the worst may be yet to come, Mantz warned. He’s advised his governing board that summer and early fall likely will bring even more hardship. Families who got their last paycheck in March are accumulating credit card and other debt and falling behind in rent and utility bills. That is only going to snowball, he said.
“We won’t see a return to normal, whatever that would be defined as, for 12 to 18 months.”
“There’s a tremendous bubble that’s going to burst here,” Gillin said. “Bad as it is now, people are going to be faced with an onslaught of rent and utilities and all these things coming up at the same time.”
Why was there a recent spike in fundraising and an increase in the goal amount of this project?
Before this gofundme was created, Rotary District 6890 raised money offline, and those gifts were added to this site to more accurately reflect actual total fundraising results thus far. The GoFundMe goal was adjusted upwards accordingly.
I know someone who is hungry and struggling. How can they get help?
Please let them know they can find information on the next food pantry near them by visiting this page .
I can't donate money. Can I donate my time?
Yes! Click here to volunteer for a Feeding TampaBay foodline or other event .
- Karen Buesing
- Rotary Club of Temple Terrace
- Lake Wales Breakfast Rotary, Tampa Westchase Rotary, Sebring Sunrise Rotary, Lakeland North Rotary
- Rotary Club of Tampa, Rotary Club of the Ridge, Rotary Club of Bartow
- Rotary Club of Ybor City