As the COVID-19 pandemic crisis continues, many students and their families are struggling financially as they face the challenges of furloughs and layoffs from work. To help soften the blow, Southwestern Adventist University has launched a relief fund called the Fighting Food & Housing Insecurity Fund to benefit students in need.
“The purpose of this new initiative is actually three fold.” says Jonathan Seitz, Director of Advancement and overseer of the FFHI Fund. “First, we hope to ease students’ financial burdens so they may refocus their attention on academic endeavors. Second, as the athletic facilities are currently closed, we want to provide alternatives to encourage our students to stay active and healthy. Third, we would like to restock the shelves of our campus food pantry so this service can continue to be of benefit to students in the community.”
Evelyn Alanis is a senior nursing student facing instability due to the pandemic. Due to safety concerns, Alanis’ work hours decreased drastically until she could no longer work. Without a job to help with tuition and her mother losing her job, the financial burden was left to her dad. “I didn’t know how I am going to pay for my last semester, let alone my living expenses as I currently live off campus with a roommate,” says Alanis. “Thanks to the FFHI Fund I will be able to pay next month’s rent.”
President Ken Shaw reflects on this important initiative, “As I am calling students each week, I encounter students just like Evelyn who need special assistance for food, housing, etc. I am so appreciative of those who have donated to this cause and for those that will donate in the weeks ahead.
In the first two weeks of this campaign, generous donors have contributed over $8,000 towards the $50,000 goal. Southwestern Adventist University students are grateful for this support. For more information on this initiative or to support this special fund visit www.swau.edu/ffhi-fund.