Different kind of ‘wall’ makes headlines: Richmond’s The Giving Wall

'Giving Wall' website helps fight poverty

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - We’ve heard a lot about a ‘wall’ making headlines over these past few years. Now, there’s a new kind of ‘wall’ getting attention.

The Giving Wall is a website that launched Wednesday, in coordination with Richmond’s anti-poverty efforts.

People struggling to make ends meet can post an urgent need on the site. Online donors can easily fulfill those wishes, helping folks over their hurdle. Those needs can be anything from new work boots or a uniform to tuition for a barbering class.

The site is a partnership between the city, local group Mindful Mornings and the Enrichmond Foundation.

To help promote the Giving Wall, three murals were painted across the city. Each tells stories of how people’s lives changed course for the better, after the actions of one other person.

"Almost everybody has a point in their life where someone did something for you, that allowed you to move forward,” said Reggie Gordon, Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Richmond’s Human Services Department.

Richmond’s Community Wealth Building, which falls under Human Services, helps residents out of poverty and is partnering with the Giving Wall. Everyone who posts a need is working with a city career adviser.

"There are times when we just don’t have the resources for that one thing they need to keep moving forward,” said Gordon of the city’s efforts with those who are battling poverty.

Often that ‘thing’ can’t be found at a food kitchen or other charities, either. That’s where the Giving Wall helps bridge the gap.

Lydia Brown has been unemployed for 20 months, after leaving her prior job for health reasons. Brown says her age and the fact she doesn’t have a degree, is making it difficult to land new work.

“I want to be employed… being able to take care of my needs and necessities,” Brown said. “I just need one employer to believe in me to see... she doesn’t have a degree, but she’s got a wealth of skills, and she’s marketable.”

Brown says she’s posting on the Giving Wall for new car tires, which will help her more easily get to interviews or the library where she applies to jobs.

"Hopefully someone sees that you're initiative is real, and you're trying to do all you can,” said Brown.

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