ColleenCFor many seniors, their well-deserved retirement years have turned into a time of survival.  After decades of marriage, many have lost their and are navigating their way alone. They worked hard for many years and now with fixed limited incomes, they struggle to pay for food and necessary medicine.  With seniors living longer than ever, many find themselves outliving their retirement funding and there simply isn’t enough money to cover basic needs.

In fact, 58% of the households served by the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano and have had to choose between paying for food or medical care/medicine. Over 40% of single senior households in Contra Costa and Solano counties do not have enough income to make ends meet as calculated by the Elder Index.

Colleen, age 71, worked as a dental nurse for years. She became a full-time caregiver to her husband when he was battling cancer. She lost her beloved husband five years ago.

“My income went down so low after my husband died. There were no longer two social security benefits coming in anymore, no retirement and no benefits. I was in financial trouble.”

Colleen has needed new glasses for a couple of years and is finding it difficult to pay for prescriptions.

“The price of meds is going up so high. One of my medicines went from a $1.20 co-pay to a $20.00 co-pay. Yeah, I’ve had to make those choices and I’ve done without the medicine. It’s real…very, very real.”

Your gift will provide vulnerable seniors with essential nutrition. One of the many ways the Food Bank serves seniors is through the Senior Food Program. More than 3,000 senior households receive groceries each month. Seniors, age 55 and over, receive bags of food so they can meet all of their basic needs that many of us take for granted.