Share Tompkins

Share Tompkins helps folks share and trade goods and services in Tompkins County, NY.

Archive for the tag “help”

Share Tompkins on Shareable

We're on the homepage of Shareable!

Shareable, a website that “tells the story of sharing,” invited us to write a how-to article for their site and we seized the opportunity in the hopes of inspiring similar efforts in other communities.

Read the article:

Food security in America: Are we learning to share?

The New York Times tells us this week that 1 in 8 Americans (and 1 in 4 children) is on food stamps. Let’s just let that sink in for a second. That’s a lot of people who need food. That’s us, that’s our neighbors – not just statistics.

The NY Times thinks the stigma around receiving nutrition assistance is fading, but Gawker has written an insightful follow-up pointing out that the comments on the Times article and even quotes in the article itself reveal that there is still a lot of shame and shaming going on when it comes to hunger in America. Here’s yet another piece from the Huffington Post about elders using food pantries that touches on these issues.

Meanwhile, Times of India reports that Americans throw away 40% of food. What is going on America?

Some of us are so hungry that, even if it shames us (though it’s this author’s opinion that there should be no shame in receiving, just as there is no shame in giving), we are seeking assistance to feed ourselves and our families. Others are in need and haven’t reached out for help, trying to make do on their own and suffering.

And yet, others of us are worried that hungry folks are leeching off the system, that they aren’t working hard enough, that they should be shamed into getting off the assistance they need so much. And we’re throwing away food, instead of giving it to those who are going without.

Despite this lingering us-them shame game, the fact that the media is having this conversation, and that people are signing up for assistance in record numbers, could just mean that America is learning to share. Maybe we’re finally discovering together that we have enough food, and that no one should go hungry, and that we can solve this problem – we just have to act like helpful neighbors, not spiteful enemies.

As these articles show, any of us can go hungry and need help. It’ll serve us all better if we can remember that and treat others as we would like to be treated. My mom taught me that (and how to share) when I was a little kid. If little kids can obey the golden rule, and share their toys, adults should be setting a good example and doing the same with food.

What are your thoughts about sharing food? Have you seen hunger in Tompkins County? Have you or people you know gone hungry? Have you helped out at Loaves and Fishes, or participated in food reclamation / waste reduction? How can our community ensure that no one goes hungry – how can we share better? Please leave a comment below.

Get Involved in Share Tompkins!

Hey folks! We’ve got six months of swaps under our collective belt and a lot of great ideas for the next six months, so it seems like a good time to get together and do some planning. We’re having an organizers’ meeting on Tuesday, November 17 from 7-9pm at 212 N. Plain St. #1 and all are welcome. We’ll work on planning our holiday swap and discuss big picture goals for the future of Share Tompkins. This is your chance to get involved! RSVP on Facebook.

The Advocacy Center: “support, advocacy and education for survivors of domestic violence since 1977”

Another local organization has been added to our Resources guide: The Advocacy Center. In addition to running a 24-hour hotline for survivors of domestic violence, (607) 277-5000, they offer other services including crisis intervention, shelter and support, legal advocacy, examinations, and referrals.

If you know of other resources that should be listed in the guide, please tell us about them.

More Resources

Our Resources guide continues to expand – Tompkins County is full of amazing organizations and activists doing great work for the community! Here are two we just added this week:

  • IthacaNet – “Dedicated to increasing the awareness of, access to, and content on the Internet – by, for, and about the people of Tompkins County, New York.”
  • Human Services Coalition of Tompkins County – Visit their website for listings of food pantries, emergency services, a working families resource guide, and more. They also run hotlines: “Need Help Finding Help? Call 2-1-1 or 1-877-211-8667 toll free for Information About… Housing… Transportation… Food… Health Care… Employment Services… Recreation Program… Volunteering… Other Local Services”

Click here to browse the complete Resources guide – and leave us comments if you know of other organizations and services that we’re missing. Thanks for your tips!

A generous landlord, a mortgage lender who fosters abandoned animals, and rescued horses needing new homes

Huffington Post is bearing witness “to the effects of the current economic environment on ordinary Americans” and this post is full of examples both beautiful and heartbreaking:

Rather than send his tenants — including small children — out on the streets, this former stockbroker-turned-savior landlord put himself back to work to cover their expenses out of his own pocket while they get back on their feet.

Animals are oft-overlooked innocent victims of the housing crisis. Families, sometimes unable to take their dog or cat with them when forced out of a home, sometimes leave their pets to die. Jodi Polanski, a mortgage lender and founder of Phoenix-area nonprofit Lost Our Home Pet Foundation, is pledging to save these animals by finding new homes and, in some cases, giving them medical help…

Detroit ABC News 7 highlights a horse farm forced into foreclosure and animals with nowhere to go. The farm is home to 31 horses — rescued after injuries, from slaughterhouses, and from negligent owners — who need new stables or face the worst. Many of the horses have health issues and are lucky to be alive at all, but now are left to the mercy of citizens who can adopt them.

Read the whole post here. How has the economy impacted you? Have you turned to the kindness of others yourself, or given generously to help your neighbors? Tell us your story in the comments.

Photos from Swap Meet #4

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more about "Share Tompkins Community Swap Meet #4", posted with vodpod

Spread the Word – Print and Distribute the Flyer for the August 29th Swap!

Volunteers and Supplies Needed for the August 29th Swap!

A week ago a bunch of us met to talk about Share Tompkins’ plans for the coming months. During the meeting we generated a list of volunteer opportunities and a supply wish list for the upcoming Community Swap Meet on Saturday August 29th.

This has the potential to be our biggest swap ever and to bring a lot of new people into our sharing circle, but we could really use some extra hands, energy and creativity to get the word out and help on the day of the event. Please take a look and contact me or comment at the end of the blog post if you can help out with any of the tasks or items. I’m also including stuff that people are already doing so you can get a sense of who is involved – thanks to those of you who have already volunteered! The event is officially from 1-7pm, so feel free to indicate if you want to volunteer for all or part of that time.

Our grand plan is to have the swap divided into multiple areas including give-away and barter areas for goods, a services area including on-site services like massage and mending, music and other entertainment, child care and tabling for community groups that help folks share locally. The lists follow – we will scale back if we don’t have enough hands.
Read more…

Resources list is up

The new Resources page is up! The idea is to provide quick access to local resources and services (and less-local but still locally-useful websites) that can help us all to find things for free, share and barter, and otherwise meet our needs in equitable and affordable ways. This page is a starting point – it needs your knowledge to help make it a useful guide.

Please check it out and leave comments on the page to tell us about the things we’ve missed. Thanks!

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