Donations for Coast Guard pile up in Alameda

Businesses in Alameda are stepping up to help Coast Guard families who are affected by the government shutdown.

Four businesses are collecting food and supplies that will be donated to the East Bay Coast Guard Spouses’ Club. The fundraising chairs for the group, Shelby James and Danielle Manor, said organization wanted to make sure their fellow families can put food on the table, in case the government shutdown prevent the Coast Guard from receiving paychecks next week.

“We’re okay for a little while, but we’re definitely worried just like a lot of families are,” Manor said. 

Donations can be dropped off at The Local, Friends of Alameda Animal Shelter, Alameda Island Brewing Company, and Rock Wall Wine Company. Otto Wright, owner of The Local, said more than 100 bags of items had been dropped off by Tuesday.

“We have a lot of regular customers here and neighbors who are Coast Guard employees and Coast guard families,” Wright said. “It’s a very small town and the Coast Guard families are part of the community. We all know each other. We’ve got to take care of each other.”

John Lipp, Executive Director of the Friends of Alameda Animal Shelter, said people can drop off items at their location. The business is open for adoptions starting on Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. 

“The Coast Guard and their families are a huge part of our family. They adopt from us, they volunteer for us... so we thought, you know what, whatever we can do to help the Coast Guard families since they've helped us, let's do it,” Lipp said.

The groceries will potentially serve up to 200 Coast Guard families in the East Bay.

“It's nice to know we have a community backing us instead of feeling like we're just the military and that we as branches we have to rally for each other,” James said.

Donations will be collected at all four locations through the week. Families will then be invited to pick out items at the Alameda YMCA. In the event the government shutdown ends, the East Bay Coast Guard Spouses’ Club said all of the groceries collected will be donated to a local food bank.