Grand Junction Mutual Aid celebrates one full year hosting weekly distributions
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - Grand Junction Mutual Aid began its nonprofit in March 2020 right as the pandemic hit. On Tuesday, the organization celebrated its first anniversary of hosting weekly food distributions in the valley.
The weekly distribution is held every Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in downtown Grand Junction. The event has grown from a small food drive with 5 volunteers last March, to a popular distribution providing all kinds of resources with 25 to 30 volunteers on hand. Event organizers say that the Mutual Aid Facebook group, along with hosting their weekly event, has made it very clear which resources are most needed in the community.
“We’re on the ground and we are communicating with the community on a weekly basis, listening to the needs of our community,” explains Stephania Vasconez, Executive Director of Grand Junction Mutual Aid Partners. “Mutual Aid is an exchange of resources, neighbors helping neighbors. We’re not a food pantry, we’re not a charity, we’re about an exchange of resources and how to help each other out.
Resources provided at the weekly distribution include voter registration, haircuts, job opportunities, clothing, and vouchers for pet vaccinations, just to name a few.
Some other volunteers have been doing their part behind the scenes. That includes gathering food and resources, along with making masks to hand out at the distributions. Mutual Aid volunteers have helped make 30,000 masks since last March, all of which have been distributed throughout the community.
The distribution has grown steadily every week for a full year now, and organizers say they will keep it running after the pandemic is over.
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