Many Americans find themselves in tough times, having to make hard choices when the income is less than the bills coming in. Times are particularly hard on some of our veterans who sometimes have to make choices between paying the rent, paying for medications, paying their utilities or paying for food. Nationally, 3 percent of currently active military personnel with families seek some form of food assistance. The percentage in Alaska is double at 6 percent, with almost 5,000 veterans having difficulty making ends meet.
Army veteran and Native American Timothy is one of those people, a veteran who has even found himself homeless at one point. Currently living on a fixed income and having a disability, Timothy still struggles at times and finds himself in line at the soup kitchens from time to time, particularly towards the end of each month when the monthly funds dry up.
“I’m a proud veteran,” said Timothy. “At one point, I was out of work and homeless. The Downtown Soup Kitchen and Food Bank of Alaska have been a tremendous help to me, as I’m living on a fixed income. I come to the soup kitchen once in a while to get something to eat. It helps me out a lot. It’s an awesome blessing.”
No veteran should find themselves having to make choices between rent and food, but it helps to have food available when they need it. “People come here to Anchorage but can’t find any work so we could provide for ourselves,” he said. “ It’s organizations like Food Bank of Alaska that does a tremendous job providing food for places like the Downtown Soup Kitchen in help feeding the homeless and those in need and people like me, as well as the elderly who live on a fixed income. I pray that they keep providing food to places like the Downtown Soup Kitchen.”