Behind the Scenes: Extraordinary Individuals Making a Difference – Arly and Eric

Life can present challenges for many in our community, but encountering Arly and Eric, two exceptional employees at The Mission, can brighten even the hardest of days. Arly Uz-Barragan coordinates our Food Pantry, while Eric Featherer manages the Thrift Store. Together, they form the welcoming faces that greet our community members with warmth and care, each playing a unique yet equally vital role in our mission to provide essential support to those in need.

Arly’s days are dedicated to ensuring the seamless operation of The Mission’s Food Pantry. From inventory management to responding to the community’s needs and coordinating with partners like HomeFront and the Mercer Street Friends Food Bank , she ensures the pantry is well-stocked for our community. With compassion and a keen eye for organization, Arly ensures shelves are filled with nutritious options, creating a space where everyone feels valued and respected, fostering a sense of belonging and dignity in our community.

Eric’s infectious warmth radiates alongside his dedication as he manages the Thrift Store. It’s nearly impossible not to smile when greeted by Eric as you walk in the door. His warmth mirrors his hard work as he ensures our community has access to clothing, shoes, jackets, and more. With thousands and thousands of pounds of clothes donated each year, managing the Thrift Store is no easy task.

In the second photo, Eric and Arly are photographed with a regular customer, Hannah, who has four girls aged 10 through 17. Eric ensures mothers like Hannah can purchase what they need at low prices, between $1 to $3 per pound of clothing. Hannah mentions that jackets, shoes, and nice dresses are the most helpful items she’s been able to buy for her girls, expressing a desire to see more items like lightly used or new sheets and bedding, which can be incredibly expensive.

Beyond their job titles and responsibilities, Arly and Eric share a common thread of compassion and empathy that defines their interactions with others. Whether it’s offering a kind word of encouragement or simply lending a listening ear, they embody the values of service and solidarity at the heart of The Mission’s work. We are incredibly grateful to them and all of our employees who selflessly dedicate themselves to uplifting those around them – you are the heartbeat of our community.

Interested in Donating to the Pantry and Thrift Store, some of the most requested items are:

  • Diapers, Pullups & Wipes
  • Cereal
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Beans
  • New Underwear & Socks

Your support can help create more success stories.