Uncertainty is the word used by a U.S. Coast Guard family member today as they picked groceries and supplies from the USO. The Coastal Bend Food Bank was able to assist the USO by delivering a truck load of nonperishable food and personal hygiene items for families affected by the government shutdown. Many families live paycheck to paycheck and the absence of their paycheck this month has greatly affected many families in the U.S. Coast Guard.
One young service member we spoke to is still maintaining a 40-hour work week despite not being paid and has had to pick up an extra job just to help maintain their daily living expenses. The family of four with one more to arrive any day now is trying to making it financially during this difficult time and says, “living day to day and figuring out every night how to make it work again is hard.” Another service member stated they are maintaining for the moment living off of their savings but hopes that they will get a check before their savings runs out. A spouse of a service member stated that the hard part is trying to decide which bill to pay such as the car payment, mortgage, or the utilities despite them all being a priority.
Many of the U.S. Coast Guard service members receiving assistance today are regular volunteers at the Coastal Bend Food Bank volunteering at least once a month giving back to their community. Now many say they are on the receiving end and appreciate the help they are receiving from the USO and the Coastal Bend Food Bank to help them to continue to feed their families and other resources during the government shutdown.