Veteran Finds Hope in Fair Prices, Fresh Food at Fare & Square
Darren is a 51-year-old veteran whose ongoing fight with arthritis makes it hard for him to find work as a home health aide, which requires him to be on his feet a lot. In addition, he has to commute to South Philadelphia from Chester to care for his aging mother several days each week.
While Darren receives some support from disability and SNAP, it’s not enough to cover his family’s rent, utility and medical bills, let alone food.
Despite these struggles, he’s actively looking for new work while completing aquatic physical therapy so he can get healthier and continue to support his family.
“I’d work through the pain of having arthritis— I don’t want to sit home. I don’t want to sit on disability,” says Darren. “So long as I’m still breathing and have strength, I should provide for me and my family.”
Before Fare & Square, our non-profit grocery store in Chester, PA, arrived in September 2013, Darren had to take the bus to Delaware to the nearest grocery store. Today, he can be at Fare & Square in a few minutes, making it easier on both his health and his wallet.
“Fare & Square food is always fresh and I love the meat package,” says Darren. “The store is always clean. And it’s just five minutes away!”
He also utilizes the Carrot Cash program, offering customers healthy eating incentives.
At Fare & Square, 85% of employees are Chester residents and Darren’s wife, Carmen, is one of them. He’s hoping he may be able to get a job at the store one day, too.
“I’m loveable, I get along with anybody,” says Darren. “I’ll work hard.”