Taking care of the herd.
No one should ever go hungry.
Adopt Technologies recently partnered with Phoenix Rescue Mission to feed as many families and individuals through the food bank and the meals they serve to the community.
This is the largest single fundraising initiative we’ve ever set out to accomplish. We started by generating a pool of matching funds as large as possible. Adopt Technologies seeded that pool with a $10,000 contribution, and our goal was to generate as much in matching funds as we could from friends, colleagues and clients. Together we raised $26,000!
RAISED FOR PHOENIX RESCUE MISSION!
We are thankful to the following clients and individuals who donated to the campaign!
Hunger looks a lot like you and me.
It knows no age, race, or gender. But it is fundamentally tied to poverty, and poverty is rampant in Arizona. The Hope for Hunger Food Bank is an outreach of Phoenix Rescue Mission dedicated to addressing both hunger and poverty. Please help provide a meal and hope to our struggling neighbors.
When Adopt Technologies reached out to Phoenix Rescue Mission to inquire about pre- and post-COVID statistics at their food bank and meal service locations, we learned the following about the demand increase in the five months starting March 1, 2020:
Additional Food Insecurity Facts:
The food insecurity rate in AZ is higher than the national average:
Over 25,000 people are homeless in Maricopa County
More than 45,000 families are receiving federal housing assistance
Of those, 37% experiencing homelessness are families
1 in 184 Arizonans are homeless
Arizona has the 3rd highest poverty rate among the nation’s 25 largest metro areas
Food insecurity is explicitly a financial problem
Food insecurity is positively associated with unemployment. In other words, as unemployment goes up, so does the rate of food insecurity.
In April 2020, unemployment in the Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale area shot up from 3.8% to 12.5% and sits at 9.7% as of June 2020.
The number of nonfarm jobs in the Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale area, which had been at record levels in the months prior to the COVID-19 pandemic (2,229,200 average from Oct. 2019 to Mar. 2020), dropped to 2,060,000 in June 2020.
This data underscores the potential impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in Maricopa County. Unemployment rates have skyrocketed and the expectation is that food insecurity will soar right along with it.
As expected given the local data on unemployment rates, at Phoenix Rescue Mission we’ve seen an increase in the number of people we serve in our food distribution programs as a result of the pandemic.
Food insecurity is a health problem. Foods that are affordable and palatable – the dietary options most readily available to food insecure households who stretch their budget to ensure they have enough food for the month – are also highly fattening. This puts food insecure individuals at increased risk of health problems such as heart disease and diabetes, which are associated with an unhealthy diet.
Code Red Homeless Outreach
Heat related illnesses and deaths are major problems in Maricopa County during the summer months when Phoenix Rescue Mission conducts its Code Red campaign, in which average daily temperatures are north of 100°F. The number of heat-associated deaths in Maricopa County has risen every year going back to 2014.
Unsheltered homelessness has been a worsening problem in Maricopa County since 2014.
The chart below displays the number of people experiencing homelessness in Maricopa County at a given point in time. It breaks out the total number of people who are homeless from those who are unsheltered (living in places not meant for human habitation). The data demonstrates that while there has been only a minor uptick in people experiencing homelessness since 2014, the percentage of homeless individuals who are unsheltered has increased dramatically. A significant number of homeless individuals in Maricopa County are exposed to the extreme summer temperatures and at risk of heat-related illness and death.
This context of heat and homelessness is the space in which PRM operates their Code Red campaign. During the Code Red campaign, the Homeless Outreach program goes out to individuals living on the streets to offer them water and hygiene items that might ultimately prove to be life-saving. On average, this program has 451 homeless contacts in a given month, many of which can be repeated with the same individuals. These repeated contacts are necessary to both meet basic needs in the moment and establish a trusting relationship in which outreach workers are able to help navigate these individuals off the streets and into healthier living situations. Ultimately, getting off the streets and into a shelter or permanent housing is the best way to reduce the heat exposure that comes with living outdoors. On average, PRM helps 18 people per month get off the streets and into short or long-term housing.