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Summer and the living ain’t easy

How can it be this hot before summer officially gets here? We’re in the midst of a two week hot spell with temperatures in the mid to high 90’s every day. Not the way I picture June in the Piedmont.

That makes me think of all the different ways we picture summer. For most of us the focus is on getting away to the mountains or the beach for that wonderful week of vacation. Perhaps a family reunion or gathering the tribe to celebrate a wedding or anniversary, or just an old fashioned July 4th picnic.

For far too many of our low income neighbors, those who drive our school buses, clean our offices, or put vegetables out in our grocery stores, the picture of summer is much bleaker. For parents it’s the constant strain of having to provide even more meals than usual for their children. With no public school in session in July, parents are faced with increased grocery bills at a time when no one’s salary goes up. I raised two boys as a working, single mother. I can well remember the shock of food costs during the summer.

So for the 48% of Loaves & Fishes clients who are children, the picture of summer is often an empty pantry. Whoever said the living is easy in the summer never walked in our client’s shoes.