541-773-5339, 60 Hawthorne Street, Medford OR 97504 office@unitedwayofjacksoncounty.org

“We all have an unsuspected reserve of strength inside that emerges when life puts us to the test.” – Isabel Allende

I hope she’s right.  I wonder though.  Those of us who have much may have that reserve.  I’m using mine and I hope you’re using yours.  When I say much, I mean a roof over your head, heat in your house, food in your pantry, people in your life (distanced for sure) and all that.  If you have that, please share your wealth with those with less among us.

We launched our COVID19 Fund on March 13, 2020, Friday the 13th.  Donors have been so generous!  The Ben B. Cheney Foundation, Pacific Source Health Plans, Oregon Community Foundation and the Joe & Frances Naumes Foundation have given large grants.  And so many of you have jumped onto our Facebook page or our website and made gifts.  These all matter.

Before processing today’s stack, we have invested $44,237.35 of the funds we’ve raised to help each other.  Because right now, that’s who it is.  It might be your neighbor, your friend, your family member. 

We’re helping artists, estheticians, restaurant workers, hotel staff, nonprofit employees, the list is painfully long.  And I do know some of them, personally.  The people have been great even with great stress in their lives.  Here’s a summary of what we’ve paid for so far:

Rent                                        $16,563.77

Emergency Childcare              $8,050.00

Nonprofit Organizations          $7,000.00

Utilities                                     $6,373.99

Homelessness                          $5,000.00

Car Insurance                              $389.43

Car Payment                               $349.58

Property Taxes                            $136.00

Prescriptions                                 $66.33

Birth Certificate                            $43.25

These times are challenged and they allow time for realigning priorities in our lives.  I’m an introvert and I realize my extravert loved ones are really suffering.  I kind of get tickled with my sisters and yet I realize it’s really hard for them.  Mostly I just try to make them laugh.  I worry about my niece who was amazingly successful in nursing school and is now among those needing masks and personal protective equipment.  I worry about my friend the paramedic.  I worry about my friends with cancer who have to go get treatments or make the horrible choice between going and not going.  These are times that challenge us and yet we can still smile at one another over Facetime or Zoom or whatever electronic meeting we do.  We may see people from our cars and we can wave.  We can check in on one another.  Yesterday I realized all the news stories about domestic violence and child abuse increasing because people are trapped in what might be profoundly difficult situations.  And what can I do?  I can say I’m here.  And I am here.  Check on those you love, those you like, and those you sort of know but wonder about.  Check on whoever crosses your mind.  May we come out of this caring more for one another and ourselves.  Thank you for what you’re doing.  Stay healthy and safe!