The 35-day government shutdown impacted thousands of federal employees across the country, leaving many without the resources to properly care for their families. Individuals, organizations and airports sprung into action in their local communities to help those affected. One of those airports was Philadelphia International Airport.
In the Jan. 25 episode of the “Taking Off with Chellie Cameron” podcast, Philadelphia Division of Aviation CEO Chellie Cameron spoke with community partners about the resources and opportunities available to help federal employees in the area impacted by the government shutdown. Representatives from the airport, TSA Philadelphia, PHL Airline Managers Council, MarketPlace Philadelphia joined Cameron to talk about the initiatives they led to offer support.
“The airport is really a big family,” Clarence LeJeune of MarketPlace Philadelphia said. “So when things happen as in a family, everybody kind of gets together and figure out how we can help. And the shutdown has been a concern for everyone.”
MarketPlace Philadelphia organized a weekly “Meals on Monday” event to feed more than 500 employees. Airlines and their industry partners hosted a sit-down lunch for all federal government workers. Fresh Grocer, Wawa, ShopRite, Philadelphia CVB donated coupons, gift cards and other items to help those affected.
Philadelphia International Airport has also opened a food bank to help employees and their families. Mahoney explained that they’re not only collecting food, but baby items, household products, pet food and other items that programs like food stamps will not cover.
“When one of our family members is in need, this community comes together,” Cameron said.
The food pantry at Philadelphia International Airport will remain open through Thursday for those in the area who need assistance.
To listen to the full podcast, click here.