The Shafter Listener
June 2020

It has been some time since we've sent out a newsletter, but we've been busy nonetheless looking for ways we can understand our role amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the disruptions to daily life, we are looking to increase our impact this year as we continue to learn about the work that is in front of us.

As always, if you haven't yet, please take a few minutes to respond to our anonymous community surveys!

What We're Working On

  • Listen to Shafter is working with local students to further enhance downtown Shafter with a mural following the theme of “dreams.” The students won approval from City Council to begin work and we’ve received an initial project grant from the Arts Council of Kern to help them get started. We are now working to obtain community input and additional funding. Read more about it on our new blog!
  • "Is it possible to find out what the food need is [in Shafter]?" A colleague in another community benefit organization here in Shafter raised this question during an email exchange. Together, we’ve started working on an answer. As a first step, we’ve compiled a comprehensive map listing of all the food distribution sites in Shafter with a goal of inviting others to ponder the question. Take a look at it here.
  • Given that listening to Shafter is the core approach to our work, we’ve created a survey to help neighbors share their Covid-19 experiences. Surveys are only one way we gather stories to impact projects we invest in, but it is an important one. Please take just a few minutes to share your story with us by completing our Covid-19 survey.

What We're Inspired By

  • One of our neighbors, Jill O’Brien, has inspired us by creating an online gathering space for Shafter gardening fans. We love seeing beautiful flowers pop up in our social media feed that are grown and nurtured by our Shafter neighbors. Follow “Shafter Gardener’s Co-op” on Facebook if you’re a fellow gardening fan and want to contribute to the conversation.
  • As Covid-19 restrictions shut down schools, schools set up daily food distribution sites, Melissa received a text from a Shafter High student mentioning how far his family lived from any distribution site. He and his Mom worked together to bring attention to this situation and requested a site that would serve their entire neighborhood. The distribution site they suggested served 70 children from mid-March to now!

What We're Dreaming Of

  • Have you ever heard of a “Bike Rodeo”? Do you love bike paths? Do you commute to work on a bike? We have a number of Shafter residents who love biking-- both for exercise and transportation. We’re dreaming of ways to engage and build a community centered around biking in Shafter! Would you like to join us?!
  • This year’s Shafter Christmas Store is being planned already. We’re dreaming of ways to create the “magic of Christmas for the whole family” while keeping Covid-19 concerns in mind. If you’d like to join the Shafter Christmas Store planning team or would like to volunteer, email us at
Take the survey! Read Our Blog