The Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia has donated $29,200 this year to date to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank to support its work to fight hunger in Northwest Georgia. The gift will provide three mobile pantries in Whitfield County and additional hunger relief in Catoosa, Chattooga, Fannin, Gilmer, Gordon, Murray and Walker counties.
"The Chattanooga Area Food Bank continues to be a wonderful partner in Northwest Georgia," said Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia President David Aft. "They provide a trusted administrative framework to reach people who are food insecure throughout our region. Their existing relationships with so many important providers in Northwest Georgia and Southeast Tennessee give us a great deal of confidence as we approach working with the communities that have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis and resulting economic problems. The Community Foundation is often called upon to identify strategies and charitable organizations by those interested in making financial donations. The food bank remains one of our 'go-to' organizations when looking at hunger and hunger-related issues throughout our region."
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic's economic impact, 1 in 5 people overall and more than 1 in 4 children could face hunger in the food bank's service area, as published in a study by Feeding America. This represents a projected 40% increase in overall food insecurity and a more than 50% increase for children.
All 20 counties the food bank serves will experience increased food insecurity, or limited or uncertain access to adequate food, which can result in hunger, according to the United States Department of Agriculture. In the nine Georgia counties the food bank serves, Catoosa and Whitfield are expected to see the most significant increases:
• Catoosa (52% increase overall; 69% increase for children)
• Chattooga (32% increase overall, 44% increase for children)
• Dade (41% increase overall; 55% increase for children)
• Fannin (39% increase overall; 51% increase for children)
• Gilmer (40% increase overall; 47% increase for children)
• Gordon (34% increase overall; 42% increase for children)
• Murray (40% increase overall; 49% increase for children)
• Walker (38% increase overall; 46% increase for children)
• Whitfield (42% increase overall; 57% increase for children)
"The Community Foundation of Northwest Georgia has been a true partner in our region through their financial support and shared passion for fighting hunger," said Melanie Hammontree, food bank development director. "This generous gift will help provide nutritious food to children, families, seniors and others who may not know where they will find their next meal during this time of great need."