Borrego Ministers' Association Needs Your Help, NOW
Last updated 10/23/2020 at 1:36pm
On the first of January 2020, our local Borrego Ministers’ Association (BMA) was struggling on a paltry $3,000 budget, helping folks out with random requests such as a high electricity bill, food certificates or gas coupons. Then in February, the philanthropic Borrego Valley Endowment Fund granted us $10,000 and we were thrilled with how much more we could now do. Little did we know what lay around the corner, and then it hit. COVID -19 descended upon us resulting in major job losses, as restaurants, hotels, golf courses and businesses closed.
Within two weeks, the calls started. Many of our hard working locals saw bills coming in but no salaries to pay them. It would take awhile for unemployment to arrive and even so, many of our folks don’t qualify for government assistance. As the requests mounted, so did the donations. In true Borrego fashion, our locals, as well as friends of Borrego, stepped up and sent the BMA their stimulus checks, their tax returns, personal donations, collections from their churches, clubs, associations and businesses.
In total, the BMA has received over $85,000 and that has gone directly back into our community. This outreach has resulted in $34,000 of assistance with rents, $23,000 towards utilities, $29,300 for food certificates and smaller amounts for gas coupons, auto repair and student orthodontic care.
In addition, $11,000 has passed through the BMA to the Mall Food Bank. The BMA has provided nearly triple the support in seven months than had been provided in the previous 10 years.
It should be noted that all requests are screened and there are limits to each type of financial assistance given. Sometimes our support is accompanied with a referral to a financial advisor or for further help with unemployment or disability. Lately we have been instrumental in alerting folks about employment opportunities in the community.
It might be safe to say that your donations have kept the village of Borrego Springs afloat during these very dark economic times. As businesses slowly reopen and folks return to work, the requests are expected to drop; however, at this time there are still many families struggling financially and the BMA’s funds are dropping quickly to low levels.
We appreciate the creative efforts to support funding for the BMA such as the Frugal Coyote’s GoFundMe (in addition to their $5,000 of gift certificates!), Rams Hill’s donation for each rental on their property and the support from Rotary, Civic Foundation, Soroptmists, American Legion, Borrego Valley Endowment, Desert Pantry, Center Market, BASIC (personal donations) and others.
The recipients of this financial support are extremely grateful and express this sentiment to us continuously. They also ask that we spread their feelings of gratitude to you, the donors.
Thank you for your generosity and kindness. Contributions can be made to the BMA and sent to PO Box 2183, Borrego Springs, California, 92004.