Director’s Corner : A Message from our Executive Director

What Recovery?

As Sunnyvale’s economy booms, something else is happening all around us—most people are getting poorer. The cost of living in Sunnyvale is skyrocketing, with average rents now over $2,000/month. But low-income workers and seniors living on fixed incomes have not received raises.

Federal Government Sequestration is slashing food and housing benefits for the most needy. The 2009 Recovery Act’s temporary boost to Food Stamps, known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), ended on November 1st. The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) reports this equals an average benefit cut of $36/month for every SNAP household. This average cut of 5.5% per household will cause hardship for many families and seniors already stretched to the limit. Learn more at http://frac.org.

The cost of living in Sunnyvale is skyrocketing.

To make matters worse, Sequestration has meant increases in housing costs for thousands with Section 8 housing vouchers. Section 8 supplements housing for the most vulnerable in our community—the disabled, seniors, and the working poor. 17,000 households in Santa Clara County now face increased rents, at a time while other benefits are being slashed.

Our statistics tell a sad story. The escalating cost of living is forcing many families to leave Silicon Valley, while those who remain are falling into a widening income divide due to lack of affordable housing and a living wage. While the number of clients coming to our doors has plateaued, the need per capita has increased.

  • Compared to five years ago, the amount of financial aid distributed by Sunnyvale Community Services for rent, utilities, and other financial emergencies increased by 39%.
  • The amount of food we distributed to low-income families and seniors increased 104% in five years.

Until there is truly a recovery for all, we need your support. Thank you for being part of our work to prevent homelessness and hunger in Sunnyvale, the “heart” of Silicon Valley.