On Friday, May 22, DeKalb County Government worked to mitigate food insecurity in the county by distributing 1,200 boxes of fresh produce and 1,200 bags of chicken to families and residents who have limited access to healthy food.

The county hosted two drive-thru food distribution events where residents received one 20-pound box of “Georgia Grown” fruit and vegetables and one 10-pound bag of frozen chicken hindquarters.

“I greatly appreciate Commissioner Gary Black, the Georgia Department of Agriculture and our South Georgia farmers for partnering with DeKalb County to provide nutritious produce to families struggling to keep food on the table,” said DeKalb CEO Michael Thurmond. “With the support of the Board of Commissioners and DeKalb COVID-19 Strategic Task Force, we are addressing the health and economic consequences of this insidious disease.”

According to the Atlanta Community Food Bank, DeKalb County has experienced a 40 percent increase in the number of people suffering from food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The food distribution event grew out of a partnership between DeKalb County Government and the Georgia Department of Agriculture’s “Buy Georgia Grown, Now More Than Ever” campaign. The county appropriated $40,000 in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to purchase the produce and chicken.

“We are honored to bridge the gap between families who are struggling to make ends meet in metro Atlanta and our hard-working farmers in South Georgia,” said Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black. “We value this partnership to join forces with CEO Mike Thurmond and the DeKalb Board of Commissioners to serve and support our fellow Georgians during this unprecedented crisis.”

DeKalb County has budgeted $3 million in CARES Act funding to help mitigate food insecurity.

For more information about the county’s response to COVID-19, visit www.dekalbcountyga.gov/coronavirus.

(Photo: Courtesy of DeKalb County)

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