It was a typical food distribution day at North Helpline in Seattle. Dozens of clients, including Martin, were at the food bank to receive groceries for their families. As he waited in line, there was no doubt he was thinking about his three school-age
children – Marley, 10, Perla, 11, and Max, 13.
A doting and proud father, Martin talked at length about his kids. Shortly after sharing that it would soon be Max’s birthday, Martin, spying a table full of free books, asked if he could take one as a birthday gift for his son – “his pride and joy”, Martin said of Max.
When Martin first began coming to the food bank, he had recently lost his management job at a local auto service center. Although he was initially able to keep his head above water thanks to his unemployment checks, he never completely recovered financially. During our last conversation, he was supporting his kids through a job as a restaurant cook. He was glad to have work, but he admitted the hours weren’t all that stable, causing him to miss out on much-needed income. He said he hoped to get a new, more reliable job in his friend’s restaurant soon.
This fall, all of Martin’s kids will return to school. They’ll be counting on Martin to ensure they have something to eat during the evenings and weekends, when school meals are unavailable. Because of you, Martin can be confident that no matter what his financial situation looks like, he can be the provider he wants to be for his family.
“If it wasn’t for this place I wouldn’t know what to do,” said Martin, thanking you for ensuring places like North Helpline are able to keep their doors open for people in need. “Coming here changed my life.”