When a kayaker or fisherman is in dress or danger, the Coast Guard comes to the rescue. However, the U.S. Coast Guard is one of the agencies impacted by the government shutdown. Now, local kayakers and fisherman, who say they have a close relationship with the agency, want to help as the shutdown continues.
Because of the shutdown, members of the Coast Guard continue to work without getting paid. Glenn Madden, a regular offshore kayaker, came up with an idea to help these service members in need. He is leading an effort to collect and donate gift cards to the Coast Guard.
“If they need a hand for once, I’m more than happy to do what I can to help them out,” said Madden.
Madden is encouraging the community to buy and donate gift cards for gas and groceries, or a Visa gift card.
Those cards can be brought to businesses like Roy’s Bait and Tackle Outfitters or Fin Factory Kayaks and Tackle. Anyone who donates, should ask for a store manager at the drop-off location.
Art Hilts, an avid kayaker too, says he was more than happy to donate to those who protect our waters.
“If they need a hand for once, I’m more than happy to do what I can to help them out,” said Hilts.
Meanwhile, Sandra Morales, the co-owner of Fin Factory Kayaks and Tackle says she personally knows kayakers who were rescued by the Coast Guard recently. So she jumped on the opportunity to help the service members.
“We feel like we as a community need to step up,” said Morales. “If it helps alleviate a grocery bill, or what have you, we want to be there for them.”
KRIS 6 was told the gift card donations for the Coast Guard will continue until the government shutdown ends.