The storm is beginning to clear.
For over a year, we’ve been caught in the churning waters of the Covid-19 pandemic. Ironically, this perfect storm has made it easier to see truths that we often ignore. We are interconnected. No man is an island. And we are only as safe as our most vulnerable neighbor. Our community flourishes when we recognize this and work together.
You embraced these truths and took action. You organized meals, donated supplies, sewed face masks, contributed money, and encouraged others to join you. Your efforts meant that UMD never stopped serving our neighbors in need! You took to heart that while we all experienced the same storm, we were all in different boats.
Now, there are troubling signs of more rough weather ahead. Storms that will hit our neighbors experiencing poverty and homelessness the hardest.
Pandemic protections like the eviction moratorium will lift, and individuals will owe months of back rent and/or utility payments. What happens to those neighbors, especially those who don’t qualify for emergency rental assistance? And food insecurity remains a concern as distribution sites that sprung up in response to COVID-19 are closing, even though the pandemic is far from over.
In coming months, more people could find themselves needing UMD’s services, while the rest of us navigate toward our “new normal,” where it will be easy to drift back into our comfort zones and blind spots. Together, we’ve built a beautiful community through this shared experience. Not anchoring ourselves now can lead to abandoning neighbors who are in distress or soon will be.
Before you take off for the summer, cast out your anchor! Become a monthly donor to UMD by May 31st. By giving regularly, you’ll help our program plan for the future and expand our turning radius to respond to community needs. Already giving monthly? That’s wonderful! Please consider an increase—whatever you can manage. It will make a real difference over time.
When we make sure our neighbors are able to stay above water, we all stay afloat. You’ve buoyed your neighbors before, and we know you’ll do it again