Two years ago, Alvin* and his wife were unhappy with their son’s school in their hometown of San Diego. They decided to give Western Washington a try. They landed in Seattle for a short time, where Alvin was able to transfer with his major national retailer, where he was a third shift warehouse coordinator-supervisor.

When his wife got a job at the hospital in Bellingham last January, the move felt right, but January is a bad time to try to transfer for a retailer generally. The small size of Bellingham didn’t help either, there were many locations to chose from around San Diego and four in Seattle, while Bellingham only has one, and it didn’t have any transferable openings.

Alvin has spent the last year looking for a new job. He’s looking for night shift work because the cost of childcare would mean that a day job needs to pay significantly more to be equal in standard of living. Night shift would allow him to continue to easily share a car with his wife, and sleep while their child is at Kindergarten, then be home for both kids in the afternoon.

Alvin’s been surprised at the cost of living in Western Washington, the cost of living isn’t that much lower than it was in Southern California, but the wages are quite a bit less.

The food bank is helping make up the difference for Alvin and his family.

It’s been rough, good overall. We have faith things will be better” says Alvin, “people here were warm, resourceful, and friendly, right from day one. They’ve been so much help.”

Bellingham Food Bank is a Food Lifeline Partner. Each year, your support supplies nearly a third of the food distributed by Western Washington food banks. About 456,523 pounds went to Bellingham Food Bank through partnership with Food Lifeline, including the Grocery Rescue program. 

 

*Name changed

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