“Veronica” started crying. She needed food.
As she sat looking for her ID with “Rita,” her case manager at Catholic Charities, Archdiocese of San Antonio, Veronica shared that her employment agency for temporary positions had called that morning to let her know that the company she was working for no longer needed her services.
“I have enough food for at least the next three days, but what am I going to do after that?” was Veronica’s distressed lament.
Unfortunately, Veronica’s situation is not unique. At any given moment, a person can experience job loss, hunger, rising rent, utility bills, fire, hurricane or a pandemic. When an individual or family needs help or experiences a life event, disaster or crisis; the impact often has a ripple effect on their job, education, health and safety. That is why United Way Safety Net partners are there to help when it’s needed most.
While providing her case worker additional information, Veronica explained that she had been working at boxing and bagging vegetables and fruit.
Knowing there were many produce companies down the street from where they were now talking, Rita inquired as to whether she had tried to look for a job on her own — without the help of the agency? She had not.
That day, though, Veronica was able to come into Catholic Charities’ pantry and choose from a variety of canned goods, bread and meats. She was overjoyed and appreciative.
Three weeks later, she returned to the pantry to let Rita know that she had, indeed, gotten a job down the street and delivered 20 cans of food for the panty to share with others.
Extremely grateful for the food and job information, she wanted to show her gratitude to Catholic Charities, a United Way Safety Net nonprofit partner, by donating back part of what she could now share to assist others.
Veronica is an inspiration for self-determination and compassion.