September is Hunger Action Month and this month’s featured Local Hunger Fighter is Marisela Aliki, an Eligibility Worker with Santa Clara County. Marisela is part of a county program called Emergency Assistance Network (EAN), where a Food Connection Specialist from Second Harvest and an Eligibility Worker from Santa Clara County work in collaboration to help clients by providing one stop for assistance.

Linda Ulloa, one of our Food Connection Coordinators who has worked with Marisela said this, “Marisela has a great work ethic and exceptional customer service.  She treats everyone with dignity and respect, makes every person, client or not, feel important and that they matter. She goes above and beyond to make sure she helps her clients as best she can. When homeless clients have lost or stolen ID’s she makes sure to provide them with a voucher. She helps promote Second Harvest programs and helps the site when they are short staffed.” Read below about what inspires Marisela in her work.

How are you helping Second Harvest and our Community?

I am honored to be a part of a group of Outreach Eligibility Workers who, through a collaboration between the Emergency Assistance Network and Second Harvest Food Bank, are able to work on- site together in essential areas such as food pantries, shelters, clinics and other supportive sites to reach out to communities and offer critical services including CalFresh, Medi-Cal, No Fee DMV forms and assistance on inquiries for other resources. Clients can also submit their verifications using our mobile app, email or fax. This team effort allows us to reach clients in an efficient manner when they are most in need.

What inspires you to give your time?

Making a difference in someone’s life inspires me. Many times some of our most in-need community members may not be able to come out to apply to our district offices or have access to apply and we are there to help them apply and get their application processed.

Why should people care about hunger in our community?

Homelessness can affect all walks of life and all ages. Recently, there has been such an increase in homelessness and with it a rise in hunger.  If we come together and find ways to help with homelessness we can also tackle hunger and create healthy thriving communities for all.

Why do you support Second Harvest?

Second Harvest nurtures people in their time of need. They open the door when many see it shut. Thank you Second Harvest for your hard work and dedication to feeding our communities.

***Meet more of your neighbors helping us build a hunger-free community.