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Mayor Liccardo, Silicon Valley Leaders Launch Regional Movement in Response to Pandemic

San José creates digital resource hub to raise funds, mobilize volunteers, and develop food distribution plan

Post Date:03/18/2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 2020

Media Contacts:

Rachel Davis, Office of Mayor Sam Liccardo, 408.712.9149, rachel.davis@sanjoseca.gov

SAN JOSÉ, CA. - Today, San José Mayor Sam Liccardo announced a new effort, led by San José and Silicon Valley community and business leaders, to offer monetary relief, mobilize volunteers, and connect residents to resources. San José is also developing a countywide food distribution plan in partnership with Santa Clara County, non-profits and the private sector. The movement will be known as Silicon Valley Strong.

"We've been seeing, in action, the Mr. Rogers quote 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' And we are seeing that from Silicon Valley in the face of this pandemic," said Mayor Liccardo. "Today we mark the start of a new effort to help our neighbors that draws on the character of our community, which will pull all of us to safer ground.”

Silicon Valley Strong calls on the region to band together in an impossibly difficult time to share resources and help neighbors. The movement includes the following:

  1. Digital Resource Hub - A way for Silicon Valley residents to stay informed and look out for each other. This landing pageserves as a hub with critical updates and resources for vulnerable neighbors.
  2. Volunteering and Food Distribution - This critical, regional effort seeks volunteers to ensure food security for our most vulnerable residents among the 1.9M people in this county. We will assist non-profits in food programs that serve seniors and the medically vulnerable who are urged to self-isolate for their own safety. 
  3. Monetary Contribution - The COVID-19 pandemic is hurting Silicon Valley residents, businesses, and community-based organizations. Particularly hard hit are those families and individuals who can least afford a medical or financial crisis. Small businesses and nonprofits are seeing an increased need for services or have had to cancel arts, cultural, or fundraising events. The San José Strong Fund, a San Jose specific fun, will work to address these economic impacts. Donations can also be made to a regional fund.

“We understand the next few weeks will bring challenges for the many small businesses that make our community one of the most special in the country,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives. “The Bay Area is our home and we wanted to do our part and help them get through this historic set of circumstances.”

Together, the City of San José joined by the County of Santa Clara, other cities in the county, community-based organizations and the private sector, is developing a plan of action to meet the needs of residents including the nutritional needs of communities in isolation in Silicon Valley. 

These efforts include an online pre-registration system on siliconvalleystrong.org for those who are in need of food and other vital necessities and identifying distribution centers that will work best for community members in need. For now, residents who are food needy can sign up by calling 2-1-1.

“While we grapple with the reality of the shelter-in-place order we cannot forget how many of our fellow residents need our help when it comes to food distribution,” said Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors President Cindy Chavez. “We must come together as a community and make sure all our children, seniors and other vulnerable residents continue to have access to healthy and nutritious meals.”

As the community continues to respond to the pandemic, the partners will be raising awareness of the resources available, the opportunities to support the fund and ways to fulfill the promise of the community by supporting organizations and small businesses. 

More information about the Silicon Valley Movement can be found at www.siliconvalleystrong.org

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 About The City of San José

 With more than one million residents, San José is one of the most diverse large cities in the United States. It is Northern California’s largest city and the 10th largest city in the nation. San José’s transformation into a global innovation center has resulted in one of the largest concentrations of technology companies and expertise in the world. In 2011, the City adopted Envision San José 2040, a long-term growth plan that sets forth a vision and a comprehensive road map to guide the City’s anticipated growth through the year 2040.

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