Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank reworks fireworks and fundraiser

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The Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank reworked its annual fundraiser for the Sammamish Lake fireworks show by canceling the fireworks, but retaining the fundraiser.

To adhere to safety guidelines, while still being able to raise funds for children facing food insecurity, event sponsors John Kritsonis and Karl Lindor of Windermere Real Estate provided $ 25,000 to match donations over $ 100.

Last year, the food bank raised $ 45,000 with the fundraiser, surpassing its goal and raising more than it had ever done despite the lack of fireworks.

“The general public is very aware of the economic impact that the pandemic has had on everyone, but especially on middle to low income people,” said Bonnie DeCaro-Monahan, Director of Development at Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank. “We benefit from a new awareness of the importance of basic needs. We also live in a very compassionate and generous community.

With the support of the community, Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank has been able to continue offering fresh and perishable food over the past year, unlike many food banks who have had to switch to non-perishable and canned foods only.

In 2020, King County’s child food insecurity increased by 54%, according to Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank. DeCaro-Monahan said their programs have served about 1,200 school-aged children.

“We have decided to expand fundraising to cover all of our youth feeding programs [this year] for several reasons, which is that we really want families to know that we have feeding programs for young people throughout the year, ”said DeCaro-Monahan. “The more people who know this, the more people can access these resources. “

The food bank offers several programs to provide meals to teens and children throughout the year during times when they do not receive food from their schools, including weekends, school vacations, and school vacations. ‘summer.

In the 2020-2021 school year, the Food and Clothing Bank expanded its Power Pack program, which provided meals on weekends, to extend throughout the week, as students were not at school to receive free or reduced lunches.

“There are 15,000 people in our 110 square mile service area who are food insecure,” DeCaro-Monahan said. “We served around 6,000 people last year, so that’s a pretty big gap of food insecure people who don’t have access to resources. We always want to be aware that these people are there and we want to make sure they know we are here. ”

Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank’s programs are all free. Check out the resources available at issaquahfoodbank.org.

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