Volunteers served hundreds of people from San Diego County who came to SDCCU Stadium to receive food and toys at United Way & San Diego/Imperial Counties Labor Councils’ Annual Food & Toy Distribution. Photo courtesy of Yvonne Kwan/United Way of San Diego County

Volunteers served hundreds of people from San Diego County who came to SDCCU Stadium to receive food and toys at United Way & San Diego/Imperial Counties Labor Councils’ Annual Food & Toy Distribution. Photo courtesy of Yvonne Kwan/United Way of San Diego County

More than 650 families received holiday dinners, toys and gifts donated by union members across San Diego and Imperial counties. United Way of San Diego County and the San Diego & Imperial Counties Labor Council’s 31st Holiday Food and Toy Distribution is an annual event coordinated through the Unions United partnership. The event supports working families and community members who struggle to make ends meet. Generous donations come from union teachers, firefighters, retail workers, nurses, truck drivers, construction workers and more. 

“In 2018, too many of our working families are paid wages so low they struggle to make ends meet. Families shouldn’t have to choose between a roof over their head and a holiday meal for their family,” said Keith Maddox, executive secretary-treasurer, San Diego & Imperial Counties Labor Council. “Our food and toy drive is an example of the power of workers standing together and helping one another and their communities.”

Many of the 200,000 workers the Labor Council represents make monthly donations from their paychecks to assist fellow working families and community members in need. In addition to funding the annual holiday event, these donations support a year-round food pantry at United Way’s San Diego headquarters and emergency assistance for workers. Last year, 2,400 union families received Unions United’s assistance — including food, rent, mortgage and utility support.