SAN DIEGO — Monday kicks off Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week and though it is an issue year-round, Father Joe’s Villages is hoping to engage the community on how they can get involved and make a difference.
“Here in San Diego, one in four have some level of food insecurity. Think about it, one in four children, one in four seniors, and actually one in three who are disabled,” said President and CEO of Father Joe’s Villages, Deacon Jim Vargas.
While they do the work 365 days a year, the upcoming week is a call to action for the community to lend their time, energy or resources as well.
“We have a humanitarian crisis here in San Diego, with the number of individuals who are homeless. At this point the count is 10,300, half of whom are unsheltered,” Vargas said.
Next Tuesday, Father Joe’s Villages staff and volunteers will build and distribute meal packages to those in need at the emergency food pantry.
“The number of cars that line up has been growing and growing, wraps around the blocks and that just shows that more and more people are needing that type of support,” Vargas said.
On Thursday, the street team will deliver warm meals via food truck and because next week San Diego is expecting some rain, there is a plan in place.
“The inclement weather season starts from November 1 and goes through March 31,” Vargas said.
Father Joe’s Villages brings in extra staff and provides an extra 134 beds during this time.
One of the upcoming ways the public can help besides volunteering is by participating in the Father Joe’s Thanksgiving Day 5k in Balboa Park. Proceeds from the event help the organization be able to keep providing all the services they do all year.
Father Joe’s has provided the discount HHAW23 valid on Nov. 15 for 15% off registration.