Bay Area food banks, shelters get much needed donation boost from nonprofit online store

Food banks and shelters are dealing with a dual challenge: increased need and decreased donations as more people lose their jobs.

Dustin Dorsey Image
Friday, August 14, 2020
Bay Area food banks, shelters get donation boost from non-profit online store
ShelterShare connects the community to shelters in the Bay Area that are in need of supply donations due to COVID-19. Their website allows users to buy items that will be purchased and donated to shelters by volunteers.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- The coronavirus pandemic is affecting all sectors of Bay Area society, but one area that's facing intense pressure is also one of the most necessary at this time: nonprofits.

Food banks and shelters are dealing with a dual challenge: increased need and decreased donations as more people lose their jobs.

But the new online non-profit, ShelterShare, is allowing people looking for a way back that ability without even leaving their home.

With ShelterShare, users are just a click away from donating essential items to shelters in need in the Bay Area.

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The growing number of people in shelters, particularly homeless, all of which have basic day-to-day needs that can't always be met.

"The increase for supplies has increased drastically since COVID-19 started," ShelterShare President and Founder Anthony Valencia said. "A lot of people were laid off and fired and it really caused a strain on the shelters and increased rates of homelessness and domestic violence all across the nation."

To solve this problem, Valencia created ShelterShare.

The California-based non-profit links community members to local shelters across the country through an online store where people can purchase essential items like toiletries, nonperishable foods and baby products.

It's a major help to these safe havens of the community.

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"One of the questions that we most often get from our supporters is 'what is the single-most greatest action that we can take?'," Hamilton Families Communications Manager Cory Winter said. "The simple answer is make a contribution. I think what ShelterShare has done is created a platform for people to do just that."

The shelter share website makes it easy to give back exactly where you want to without even leaving your couch.

You choose the Bay Area shelter.

You pick the items you want to purchase.

And a ShelterShare volunteer will go to the store, buy the item and deliver it to the shelter in need.

It's that simple.

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"We've been able to supply shelters all across California with thousands of dollars worth of donations. Any amount that you give really goes directly and impacts a life of someone who really needs those basic human necessities and every dollar you spend is going towards getting these products to a shelter of your choice."

With ShelterShare a small price tag can lead to a big difference.

For more information on ShelterShare, you can visit their website here.

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