With temperatures near freezing, Beverly sits in her car waiting for her turn in line to come.
Although it’s early December, she’s not waiting for a retailer to open or a special item to go on sale. She’s waiting for her chance to get a box of free food from Oasis, an emergency food pantry in Caldwell.
But the temperatures don’t dampen her spirits.
“I don’t mind it,” she says.
Beverly lives with her husband and son, both of whom are disabled. She’s the lone member of her household who can brave the winter temperatures and go out to get the box of food. She works for a local school district as a food service cook, as she’s done since 1992, and she provides for her family. But those provisions run out quickly, and that’s when the name of Oasis, a partner of The Idaho Foodbank, really rings true.
“I sit down at the dinner table and think of all the items that come from Oasis,” Beverly says. “This is from Oasis. That is from Oasis. Sometimes our whole meal comes from there. We’re pretty thankful that they have this available.”
Beverly is honest about her predicament. Her son had to travel to Salt Lake City to see a specialist for 8 years while he was growing up. Neither her husband nor her son can drive. Because of her son’s illness, the family must avoid specific foods and anything with sharp edges, like nuts or popcorn. Yet after everything, Beverly uses the word “thankful” and “relief” when talking about Oasis and The Idaho Foodbank.
Those words she chooses are her message to other Idahoans who may be in a tough spot. Turning to a pantry or to the Foodbank isn’t about letting your pride go. It’s not about defeat, but the courage to ask for help.
“It’s nothing to be ashamed of to have to go,” Beverly says to others who may be in need. “Give it a try.”