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Santa Clara Valley Water District Donates $1M to Sacred Heart Community Service

As the need for food and financial assistance continues to boom, more and more families in the Bay Area are finding it harder to make ends meet.

On Thursday, the Santa Clara Valley Water District stepped up, donating $1 million to Sacred Heart Community Service so the agency can in turn help struggling families pay their water bills.

“We live in one of the wealthiest areas in the country: Silicon Valley, Santa Clara County,” Valley Water District board chairman John Varela said. “But yet there are those families that don’t enjoy the same riches as others do.”

To double the savings, the water bill help also comes with water conservation education — a critical addition during the historic drought.

“It’s great,” Stephanie Cifuentes of San Jose said. “It’s a great opportunity providing the service that they have to help people who can’t afford to pay their bills.”

Last year, Sacred Heart helped 1,700 families pay their water bills. It expects to help even more this year.

While it may not solve a family’s financial crisis, many said every little bit helps.

“It’s really important that we develop new partnerships to make sure families get what they need and they’re not having to make difficult decisions like medical bills or taking care of basic needs like food, clothing and water,” Poncho Guevara with Sacred Heart said.

Each day, Guevara looks at the growing line at Sacred Heart, and each day his heart breaks.

“It’s shocking at some level to actually see the level of need,” he said. “We saw a decrease during the pandemic because a lot of families had to move out of the area because they couldn’t afford to stay here.”

More than 25,000 people per year walk though the doors at Sacred Heart, each finding it more and more difficult to make ends meet.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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