Critical support for East St. Louis
East St. Louis and its surrounding area are some of the most underserved communities in our region. With many families already facing limited access to transportation, childcare and grocery stores, COVID-19 has made it even harder for many to afford and access basic needs. Since the start of COVID-19, United Way 2-1-1 has seen a 115% increase in calls from East St. Louis for food assistance.
Recognizing the unique needs in this community, United Way recently helped launch the East St. Louis Area COAD, a collective of local nonprofits and other stakeholders, to direct an effective, collaborative response to this crisis.
Providing groceries to the most vulnerable
Additionally, United Way is supporting organizations that are serving families in the East St. Louis area through emergency response grants, like Catholic Urban Programs (CUP).
CUP is providing targeted food assistance to local people by distributing food boxes to feed entire families, including recipes and tips for stretching meals and staying healthy. Last week alone, they provided 3,400 meals to feed families with limited transportation and access to grocery stores, children who rely on school lunches, and single-parent households with limited income.
Organizations like CUP are essential to ensuring our neighbors have what they need to stay strong, now and for the future.
We’re all in this together
This is just one example of the critical work being done in our community right now. In the coming weeks, United Way will continue to stand by our region, helping with both critical disaster relief and long-term recovery efforts.
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Emily (Becherer) Gearhart is a proud native St. Louisan, writer and lover of stories in all their forms. Faced with a captivating question, she will research her way down a rabbit hole and emerge with words that educate and inspire. You can probably find her taking in a musical, bingeing through a new podcast series, exploring the trails at local parks or curating her extensive library of Spotify playlists.