Bay Area Rescue Mission seeks support amid high demand for services

Giving movement prompts urgent call for support from rescue mission
Bay Area Rescue Mission at 2114 Macdonald Ave. in Richmond.

By Kathy Chouteau

Since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, Richmond’s Bay Area Rescue Mission (BARM) has seen an increased demand for its services, which include providing food, shelter and other necessities for people in need. Given the influx of people currently needing help, coupled with the nonprofit’s policy of never turning anyone away, funding is crucial at this time.

Possible relief is arriving in the form of #GivingTuesdayNow, a global day of giving. Spearheaded by worldwide generosity movement, GivingTuesday, #GivingTuesdayNow will happen Tuesday, May 5, “as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19,” per organizers. It aims to focus “generosity, citizen engagement, business and philanthropy activation, and support for communities and nonprofits around the world.”

Supporters of critical causes like BARM can spread the word about them on social media with the #GivingTuesdayNow hashtag, while also assisting with contributions.

According to BARM President and CEO Rev. John Anderson, “Since the pandemic began, Bay Area Rescue Mission has been inundated with requests for food, shelter and medical needs. This takes a lot of resources, and this campaign is a great way for the community to get involved. It could not have come at a more crucial time.”

Anderson said BARM anticipates the number of people seeking their services to continue to sharply increase during the approaching weeks and months. While the organization plans to hold steadfast to its commitment to not turn anyone away, it will need community support to be able to do so.

“If conditions become extreme,” he said, BARM “is prepared to add additional sleeping options, meal services and food distributions. These are unprecedented times, and we must react quickly to provide for those in our community who need us most.”

Anyone wishing to support some of the community’s most vulnerable residents can do so with a donation to BARM before, during or beyond #GivingTuesdayNow by clicking here. Cash and material donations can also be sent to BARM at 2114 Macdonald Ave., Richmond, CA, 94801.

“The Mission’s friends and partners here in the community never let us down, and I’m truly grateful,” said Anderson. “I’m confident their hearts for the hungry and homeless will be evident and I want to thank everyone in advance for coming alongside Bay Area Rescue Mission as we fight this battle.”