t’s hard to imagine a more positive response than the one CFA has received in conjunction with the NCJW’s generous donation of $50 gift cards to their thrift shop in Bergenfield. While everyone has been thankful for the opportunity to meet the wonderful, helpfulstaff at the store there have been a few that are quite touching.
- One woman in her 50’s lost everything–her apartment, clothing,furniture–to a bedbug infestation in her complex. She literally had to move with nothing. She was extremely happy to receive the $50 gift card and called to relate how she was able to pick up, not only clothing, but some household items as well.
- A couple in their 50’s recently lost their jobs and were having a difficult time making ends meet. While CFA was able to assist with some issues, their main concern was that the woman’s 87 year old mother would be celebrating her birthday with no actual “celebration” because there was no money left after the bills were paid. The family was very sad because Mom had never forgotten an occasion and was always there when they needed her. Since Mom had always sacrificed for her family she often went without. She needed clothes and myriad other items. The gift card enabled them to ensure that Mom had a great birthday–and the couple was also able to purchase items they desperately needed for themselves.
- Another client with many health problems–rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease and early onset dementia, among them–was also able to put the gift card to good use. Her income consists of SSD only and she was able to browse and buy items she would not normally be able to afford. She was very specific in mentioning how helpful and friendly she found the staff.
There have also been instances of young families being able to ease the burden of shopping at expensive malls by being able to go to the store and purchase needed items. Even the children have been happy to go on an excursion and buy something without being told “No, it’s too expensive”. The impact of this program on people who are trying to make the best of this difficult economy is simple to measure. It makes them happy and gives them hope that, even if the times are tough, there are people who care and who are willing to help in a very meaningful way.