Thanks to generosity of Park City REALTORS through our Philanthropic Fund, a donation of $30,000 was given to The Christian Center of Park City.
It has come to the attention of the Park City Board of Realtors that 25% of the Park City school children are at the poverty level, and rely on school-funded programs to provide breakfast and lunch daily to include weekends with the BackPack program. Prior to the COVID-19 crisis, 1,000 students were enrolled in this program, and that number is going to go up significantly with the unemployment that we are currently facing. The schools are still providing meals for pick up M-F at Treasure and Ecker Hill, however only 80-160 meals are getting picked up, of the 1,000 students who normally get food from this program, that means over 800 kids are likely going hungry right now in Park City. We believe the lack of student participation is due schools being closed and lack of an operational school bus system, communication, decrease in the Public transit system routes, and the likelihood that many of the parents are still working and the children are at home alone and/or taking care of siblings.
Meals are not the only concern, as homeschooling is placing an enormous toll on families. Children look to the school day for mental stability and structure. Many families do not have internet or consistent internet currently. There are high school students who are so determined to get their homework completed, they are riding the City buses for free Wi-fi for up to 3-4 hours per day. The City is shutting down some of the bus lines, making it harder for students to ride the buses and get this free internet access to complete school requirements.
We are all experiencing an enormous amount of change and stress with this pandemic crisis, but we cannot allow the children to suffer by not providing them access to food and basic needs. We spoke to the Christian Center at length, and without these basic needs being supported we will be faced with additional homelessness and hunger in our community. Please keep in mind that any undocumented Park City resident will not receive any financial assistance from the government programs that have been initiated.