Trinity Mutual Aid raises over $100,000 in four days

The non-Trinity affiliated organization helped the San Antonio community navigate the winter storm


Natalia Salas

Members of Trinity Mutual Aid tabling in between residence halls

The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with the devastating winter storm, has left some of the Trinity community in need of resources. Whether it be groceries, household essentials, or money, Trinity Mutual Aid has been working towards fundraising and redistributing money to people in need. According to their Instagram, Trinity Mutual Aid is responsible for “tabling on campus, setting up donation sites for both local community pantries and fridges, anonymous forum to buy and drop off food to students in need, and fundraising initiatives.”

Beginning on February 11, 2021, Texans were met with a deadly winter storm that left at least 26 people dead across the state. The storm left millions of Texans without power, putting the organization at the forefront of redistributing blankets, tents, food, and other resources in the San Antonio community.

According to the organization, they raised about $110,000 over four days during the winter storm. Their Venmo handle was put into an infographic that was shared by celebrities like Anne Hathaway, Bella Hadid, Chrissy Teigan, AnnaSophia Robb, Sohla El-Waylly, and Amy Poehler’s non-profit.

“We’re not technically a school org. but since we’ve been doing this, we’re all really excited and proud to be part of a group that redistributes wealth to this extent,” said Kaufman.

Riley Ruchti, sophomore, says that Trinity Mutual Aid is unlike other organizations because there is no hierarchical leadership.

“Trinity Mutual Aid operates horizontally, meaning that we don’t have hierarchical leadership. Anyone who comes to our weekly meetings helps to decide what action we’ll take and can volunteer to help with tasks.”

Because of this, Ruchti’s role in the organization varies.

“I help organize fundraising, take meeting notes, meet with admin, and communicate with volunteers who aren’t part of our organizing team,” said Ruchti.

Avy Friedman, junior, elaborated on the group’s outreach plans for the future.

“We have what we just call ‘Mutual Aid Core’ and it’s around ten of us that are in charge of organizing and keeping the momentum going. We are working toward having working groups so that there are a few people who share more specific tasks like social media and PR, finances, and organizing and anyone is able to get involved whenever,” said Friedman.

Trinity Mutual Aid is always on the hunt for new ways to fundraise for the San Antonio community.

“During one of our weekly meetings in January, we brainstormed the idea of flooding our social media with posts asking for people to donate even the smallest amount to celebrate the beginning of a new semester and a new year,” said Friedman.

Weeks ago, the organization set out to raise a minimum of $500 for mutual aid.

“Our initial goal was $500, which we met within 24 hours. Then we raised our goal to $1000 and by the end of the week, we had raised $1,645.70. The money goes directly toward meeting emergency needs in the San Antonio community, which includes filling community fridges and pantries, helping people meet rent, paying for medical expenses, and a myriad of other things,” said Ruchti.

All of Trinity Mutual Aid’s assistance is provided without means testing, which means that people requesting aid don’t have to go out of their way to “prove” they need it.

“I work both the anonymous forms right now, so the anonymous community form, the anonymous Trinity student form. I work and respond to everybody and get those funds sent to them because a really big deal of it is valued anonymity for Trinity kids to have their peers not know who’s asking for money or what their reasons are, or even having to feel like they have to prove to anyone why they need the money,” said Kaufman.