Bay Area charities see sharp increase in need this holiday season but also uptick in generosity


Bay Space charities have been making changes in the course of the vacation season of giving, because the pandemic has led to modifications in the best way they function amid elevated want in the neighborhood. 

CityTeam partnered with the Sharks Basis and SAP for a toy and meals distribution at Ace Esperanza Faculty in San Jose on Dec. 15, 2020.

As a consequence of security protocols, annual toy giveaway occasions have been reimagined. Many teams inspired folks to think about present playing cards for donations. Some have turned toy-giveaways into out of doors occasions and drive-throughs, the place households can pick-up toys for his or her kids.

CityTeam partnered with the Sharks Basis and SAP for a toy and meals distribution at Ace Esperanza Faculty in San Jose on Dec. 15, 2020. (Samantha Glenn/CityTeam)

On Tuesday, faith-based non-profit CityTeam held a toy and meals distribution occasion at Ace Esperanza Center Faculty in San Jose, working in partnership with the San Jose Sharks Basis & SAP Heart. “The Sharks basis and SAP had been working onerous serving to the flood of vehicles that got here by, together with many new households,” CityTeam’s Samantha Glenn advised KTVU. Two extra related occasions had been scheduled for Wednesday. 

CityTeam partnered with the Sharks Basis and SAP for a toy and meals distribution at Ace Esperanza Faculty in San Jose on Dec. 15, 2020. (Samantha Glenn/CityTeam)

“We at the moment are serving thrice as many households by offering meals and groceries and sizzling meals, as in comparison with final 12 months,” defined Tamara Wheeler, CityTeam’s vice chairman of promoting and communications. 

CityTeam partnered with the Sharks Basis and SAP for a toy and meals distribution at Ace Esperanza Faculty in San Jose on Dec. 15, 2020. (Samantha Glenn/CityTeam)

The pandemic has led to many Bay Space households experiencing monetary hardships not like they’d ever felt earlier than. 

CityTeam partnered with the Sharks Basis and SAP for a toy and meals distribution at Ace Esperanza Faculty in San Jose on Dec. 15, 2020. (Samantha Glenn/CityTeam)

In response, the group has expanded its outreach program. “Now we have a free cell meals truck in our CityTeam San Francisco location,” stated Wheeler, including it’s additionally serving people in homeless encampments at its Oakland and San Jose areas by offering meals, water, clothes, and shelter.

Amid the sharp rise in want, the group has seen declines in particular person donations contributed to its toy and turkey drives this 12 months. However CityTeam officers stated they’ve had a lot motive to be grateful.

“Our neighborhood has stepped as much as present for extra neighbors in want,” Wheeler stated, “donations proceed to be given from so many devoted supporters throughout our 5 cities to make sure we are able to proceed our packages uninterrupted.”


It’s a sentiment echoed by officers with Sacred Heart Community Service which serves households within the South Bay.

“In the course of the pandemic we now have seen an uptick in want and generosity as increasingly more people turn into conscious of the deep financial inequality that plagues our neighborhood,” defined Demone Carter, director of neighborhood engagement for Sacred Coronary heart.

This week, Sacred Coronary heart kicked off its annual “Toy Field” toy drive, distributing present playing cards and small luggage with stocking stuffers and vacation greetings to hundreds of households. 

Sacred Coronary heart Group Service launched its annual toy drive on Dec. 14, 2020.

Carter stated that the group has been deeply appreciative of neighborhood efforts to assist neighbors who had been struggling, however he referred to as on native, state, federal governments for extra motion particularly throughout this unprecedented time. 

“…the dimensions of this disaster is much past the scope of any non revenue,” he stated, “that is why Sacred Coronary heart Group Service is dedicated to organizing impacted communities to create systemic change.”

In San Francisco, the GLIDE Foundation has been a go-to for the town’s underserved residents for greater than 50 years. The non-profit stated this 12 months it has shifted the way it’s responding to the wants of its neighborhood.

“The pandemic has created a higher want and revealed longstanding inequities in our society. GLIDE has responded with free Covid-19 testing for susceptible residents and expanded providers,” GLIDE Foundations spokeswoman Denise Lamott advised KTVU.

Lamott additionally famous that whereas there was a higher name for assist this season, donors have thus far stepped as much as reply that decision. 

This 12 months, the muse’s annual Grocery Bag Giveaway supplied 5,300 luggage of groceries throughout the town. That’s 1,300 greater than the earlier 12 months. The group’s annual Toy Wonderland giveaway occasion this week was set to ship 700 luggage of toys, almost double that of 2019. 

“Donations to the GLIDE Basis have fortunately been secure thus far,” Lamott stated, however added, that it’s nonetheless within the midst of its end-of-the-year vacation season fundraising effort. 

The Salvation Army Golden State Division stated it too has seen a spike in want this season– a rise of fifty% than earlier years. 

The chapter stated that prefer it did on Thanksgiving, it plans to work with native government catering enterprise Andros Rostilj to make and package deal roughly 1,000 meals for Christams to allow them to be distributed safely, following coronavirus pointers. 

The group has additionally been working for months on its toy drive. Lots of its companions from earlier years haven’t been in a position to contribute to the donation effort because of pandemic restrictions. “This positioned us right into a dire state of affairs the place we had 1,000 households (1,800 kids) anticipating toys for Christmas and we solely had sufficient toys for 10% of them.” stated Jennifer Byrd, the director of communications for The Salvation Military Golden State Division.

So like different organizations, it needed to make changes to make sure that households had been taken care of this 12 months. “We proactively ordered a bulk order of Toys from the Mattel company and made extra purchases of toys and present playing cards on the Goal in Serramonte,” Byrd defined.

The Salvation Military Purple Kettle Marketing campaign has been hit onerous throughout COVID-19 stay-at-home orders.

The coronavirus stay-at-home orders have vastly affected The Salvation Military’s Purple Kettle Marketing campaign. The iconic kettles that’s seen on retailer corners and at retailer entrances in the course of the Christmas season, has thus far introduced in $25,000 in San Francisco this 12 months, a fraction of the $108,000 the marketing campaign collected by this time final 12 months. The group has put out fewer crimson kettles and relied closely on on-line donations.  

However with the wants of underserved communities higher than ever, organizers will proceed to do what they’ll to try to present.

Later this week, the non-profit deliberate to kick-off a revised model of its annual in-person procuring expertise, throughout which folks, assisted by a private shopper bought to select their Christmas presents at a Salvation Military location turned toy store.

Like the whole lot else this 12 months, changes have been made: The same old at some point truthful can be held over 5 days throughout which pre-bagged, individualized presents can be distributed to lots of of households in want. It is one of many many modified packages The Salvation Military has held this 12 months as a part of its renewed vacation marketing campaign, “Assist Rescue Christmas.”


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