The Cape Cod Times Needy Fund exceeded its 2022 fundraising goal of $1,550,000 thanks to the continued generosity of residents and businesses across the region.
The total raised was $1,629,633.64, according to the Needy Fund Executive Director Susan Johnson.
“Just as much as we’ve surpassed our goals, and we’re thrilled about that, we are going to get that money back out into the community because the need hasn’t slowed down,” Johnson said.
“Our donors, their continued support and commitment to the Needy Fund is just amazing,” she said. “It’s really important to me that we have such a compassionate community.”
Donations ranged from $1 to $100,000.
The fundraising drive includes the summer campaign and the holiday campaign, which started around Thanksgiving.
Generally, 90% of what is raised is spent on programming and 10% on administrative expenses, based on 2021 data, Johnson said.
Who did the Needy Fund help in 2022?
There were 4,354 year-round Residents of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket who were helped in 2022.
“The greatest need is still housing,” Johnson said.
Over 50% of the assistance goes towards keeping people housed, she said. The help with housing expenses is either rent or mortgage payments.
The next biggest expense for individuals asking for help is for utility bills.
“That’s keeping people warm and their lights on,” Johnson said.
What are the trends in requests for assistance?
“We have seen a huge increase, a 47% increase over last year, for people asking for food assistance,” Johnson said. The Needy Fund provides vouchers for grocery stores, as well as encourages the use of food pantries.
The other trend the Needy Fund has seen is individuals being displaced due to homeowners moving year-round into their second homes on Cape Cod and the Islands, or landlords selling their homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, she said.
More:Needy Fund helps injured tradesman, wife get back on feet
“It’s really hard to find an affordable rental on the Cape now,” Johnson said. “The issue hasn’t changed. It’s always been difficult. It’s just that exponentially worse. There are fewer seasonal rentals.”
Who asks for help from the Needy Fund?
Out of the 4,354 individuals helped, 30% were children, Johnson said.
About 35% identified as persons of color, she said.
More than 53% served by the Needy Fund receive SNAP benefits, which are Federally funded Nutrition benefits to supplement the food budget of families who need help.
Individuals who received disability benefits comprise about 35% of the Needy Fund recipients, and 33% are adults aged 65 and older.
More:Needy Fund helps a family with a critically injured child
What is planned for 2023 for Needy Fund?
“We’re going to continue to serve the Cape and the Islands,” Johnson said.
The Needy Fund expects to look towards more assistance for child care, to help people stay at work.
“Child care is a huge issue on the Cape,” Johnson said.
The Needy Fund is also expecting more calls from people seeking assistance.
“Our call volume has increased significantly from the year before. That hasn’t stopped,” she said.
More about the Needy Fund
Many human service agencies offer assistance to those in need, but the Cape Cod Times Needy Fund has been helping with a host of immediate, short-term emergencies such as food, rent, medical costs and other basic expenses since 1936.
More:Needy Fund helps a Hyannis Veteran and his wife avoid eviction
In 2022, the Needy Fund received more than 7,500 requests for assistance. The Needy Fund provided financial aid for over 5,500 basic human needs on behalf of more than 4,350 Residents of Cape Cod and the Islands.
No cash is given to Needy Fund recipients. Instead, the nonprofit pays vendors through a voucher program. The case described above was provided by the Needy Fund on the condition of anonymity.
In 2021:Cape Cod Times Needy Fund campaign raises $1.62M, exceeding goal
How to Donate to the Needy Fund
Donations, which are tax-deductible, may be made at needyfund.org. Checks can also be made payable to the Cape Cod Times Needy Fund and mailed to Cape Cod Times Needy Fund, PO Box 36, Hyannis, MA 02601.
How to get Needy Fund assistance
Those needing assistance may contact the Needy Fund at 508-778-5661 or 800-422-1446.
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