Tue. Apr 16th, 2024

United Way works to meet community needs created by Walmart store fire

Temporary Walmart Closure Informational and Community Services Gap Response Meeting was held on September 6 at the Matt 25 Building.

Press Release, United Way of Eastern New Mexico:

 

The August 6 meeting was well-attended, with representation from Walmart Corporate, local Walmart management, City of Clovis employees, Clovis Fire Department, local citizens, multiple non-profit organizations, Workforce Development, CCC, EPCOG, and representatives for two of our State elected officials.

 

Walmart Update

  • The Clovis Walmart is the second highest grossing Walmart in our region (this includes stores in Lubbock, etc.) There is a broad recognition that losing the Clovis store temporarily will have a large impact on our community and our region.  The Clovis store supports rural regions surrounding Clovis.
  • A temporary mobile Walmart pharmacy is being put in place and will open soon.
  • A mobile bank will soon be set up (third party).
  • Walmart officials assured that associates will be taken care of and are encouraged to contact store management for any concerns about the status of their employment as Associates. This does not apply to third-party employees including delivery services.  Associates have the option to work in the Portales store or transfer to another Walmart store.  Wal-Mart officials stated they are assisting with transportation issues to other stores for their Associates.
  • The investigation into what caused the fire and the full extent of the damages has just started and no additional information is available at this time.
  • No time estimate has been given for rebuilding and reopening but the goal is to get this done as quickly as possible.
  • News and updates from Walmart will be distributed via media outlets.

 

Gaps/Community Needs

  • Citizens may need assistance learning how to set up grocery apps and services through other local grocery stores such as S&S, Walmart and Lowes.  Drop in training sessions could be provided for this. Those trained could then do training for other groups or individually as needed.
  • Homebound individuals will need delivery for groceries and access to prescriptions.  This includes seniors, those on a fixed income, differently abled individuals of all ages.
  • Individuals with no transportation will be challenged with higher grocery spending in town and lack of transportation to get to the Portales Walmart.
  • Our immigrant population needs access to banking for cashing checks and wiring/sending money. May need referrals to other locations in town for these services.
  • The Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico will temporarily not receive regular donations of meat and other food products previously donated by the Clovis Walmart.  This will create a large need for meat / financial donations to the Food Bank.  The temporary closure of Walmart as a source for affordable groceries, household goods, infant formula, etc. will put a strain on services such as the Food Bank, etc. Extra monetary donations will be needed allowing the Food Bank to overcome the deficit and ramp up to meet the additional need.
  • The Humane Society will temporarily not receive regular donations of pet food products previously donated by the Clovis Walmart.  This will create a large need for pet food and monetary donations to the Humane Society.
  • Individuals on fixed incomes will be challenged to make dollars stretch even more.  Gift cards could be donated to the Matt 25 Center and the United Way to have on hand in case there is a need for individuals who reach out through 211.
  • Volunteers are available to assist with grocery delivery, gift card delivery and other needs as they arise.
  • Continued clear and consistent communication in English and Spanish through all possible channels and cascading information about 211 for community resources will be vital to supporting our community during this temporary strain.Public Communication:

 

The Clovis community offers an abundance of community resources and services for citizens. Local non-profit organizations as well as the City of Clovis are committed to working together to ensure our community members are supported during this difficult time. Your neighbors and fellow citizens are here to support you. We recognize Walmart’s temporary closure creates gaps in access to affordable commodities and places extra strain on already struggling individuals and families of all ages.

 

Citizens are encouraged to call 211, the United Way of Eastern New Mexico Helpline, for any and all concerns related to the temporary Walmart Closure.  The expert, caring specialists at 211 will listen, identify underlying problems, and connect people in need with resources and services in their community as a rapid response.  Encouraging and referring individuals to call 211 for information and services is one of the best ways you can help your neighbors at this time. Tell everyone about the 211.

 

Ways to Take Action to Help those in Need:

  • Give a monetary donation to the Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico.  Every dollar helps! The director of FBENM estimates that average of donated food from the store including meat is more than $8,000 each month. Monetary donations enable the Food Bank to keep shelves stocked and provide fresh meat, produce and other goods to our vulnerable community members.  https://www.fbenm.org/donate
  • Donate $25 or $50 gift cards in for local grocery stores including Albertsons, Lowes and S&S to United Way of Eastern New Mexico.  These gift cards will be given to local organizations like Matt 25, Salvation Army, etc so they can better assist individuals who may be facing higher grocery costs.
  • Donations of pet food to the High Plains Humane Society are requested as well. For details call 575-791-2572.

Those wishing to make a difference in the lives of our neighbors in need are urged to donate as soon as they can. For information call UWENM 575-769-2103.

For more information or to learn more about how to get involved, call 211 or email staff@unitedwayenm.org.

 

 

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