One of the great things I have noticed over the past several months at MOM’s is how many people are coming in and asking if they can use public assistance (“food stamps”) to pay for their purchases. I see this as an encouraging trend, one in which people from all walks of life are waking up to the importance of not only good nutrition, but the value of ethically and organically created food.
As someone who experienced part of my childhood on public assistance after the death of my father, I remember that there seemed to also be the implication that we would use those funds to purchase low-quality, mass produced processed food with no nutritional value. I also remember my mother lamenting that she hated going into our natural food stores at the time as there existed a certain level of snobbery. She therefore experienced being made to feel like a lesser person for having to use that method of payment.
What I love about MOM’s is that we have such a strong set of core values, most notably that we reserve judgment. This makes not only working at MOM’s, but shopping at MOM’s a warm, comfortable, and safe experience for everyone. We develop lasting relationships with our customers, and they often open up to us about everything from serious health concerns to their day-to-day struggles. Because of this, combined with the fact that MOM’s has such great prices ($0.79/pound for organic fair trade bananas? Amazing!) we have been very fortunate to develop a dynamic and diverse customer base.
We pride ourselves on being open, fair, kind, and accepting of everyone who walks through our doors. We encourage everyone to take ownership of the environment and their health through responsible eating. No one who enters our stores need ever feel that there is shame in poverty; rather, we appreciate the dignity of those who choose to make the right decisions when it comes to their food even when experiencing financial hardship.
Elizabeth works at Alexandria MOM’s.