My name’s Gayle Farinha, and I came to the food pantry because Amy asked me to share my story with you. I was a victim in a really violent crime last year and I lost my job and I lost my home and I became homeless really quickly. It was alarming how fast I became homeless. I came here for food. They were so nice to me, so kind to me, I never felt like I was any less of a person because I needed their help. But I believe that people . . . closed mouths don’t get fed. If you need help, you need to ask for it, and there are lots and lots of people that will help you in Sacramento. You just have to look for them and you just have to ask them for help. You can’t give up; you just have to keep going. Every single day, you have to get up and keep going and keep trying to help yourself and stop blaming somebody else for whatever is going on and follow through.
This food pantry is important to me because feeding the hungry and feeding the homeless, it’s something that I’m really passionate about, not just because I needed to use it but it’s something that I’m passionate about because I know that all these people could be just like me and they could’ve slipped into this situation. In three days, I was standing in that line. I slipped into that situation so fast, it made my head spin. I could not believe that was happening. And when I look back, it’s probably the same thing that happens to a lot of these people. They depend on it to eat. And I don’t like the feeling of being hungry. I think being hungry is a really sad thing.
I’m sure these people have not been standing in this line their whole life. They need a break, and they need somebody to help them or show them the way. And some people, you know, my boss right now–he gave me a break. He knew when he hired me that I was having issues and it might take me a minute to settle in, and it did, and everything is great. But it takes somebody giving you a break. Or not just a break, but somebody being at least understanding of where you’re coming from. I’m a good example of somebody that just kept trying. You know, and don’t give up no matter what anybody says. Just keep trying.
"I was a victim of a really violent crime. I lost my job and I lost my home. It was alarming how fast I became homeless."
- Gayle Farinha