(Apr. 23, 2020) The coronavirus crisis poses urgent food-security threats to many Tennessee families – whether from health-related or economic impacts.
According to state records, some 130,000 Tennesseans filed for unemployment during the latter part of March, alongside more than 4,600 documented COVID-19 cases in Tennessee as of April 9, 2020.
But the Volunteer State is mounting a comeback – through a collaborative effort between Tennessee’s regional community foundations and locally based hunger-relief organizations.
East Tennessee Foundation (ETF), a community foundation serving 25 East Tennessee counties with a mission of “thoughtful giving for stronger communities and better lives,” announced today a new #COVIDfeedTN fundraiser, in partnership with major retailers statewide as well as ETF’s sister community foundations based in Chattanooga, Memphis and Nashville.
Tennesseans can purchase a #COVIDfeedTN t-shirt with the inspirational message, “The Comeback is Always Stronger Than The Setback,” by ordering online or purchasing at a participating retailer. All proceeds will directly fund grants to nonprofit hunger-relief organizations or initiatives, located in the regional area of the Tennessee ZIP code of purchase.
“When you purchase a #COVIDfeedTN t-shirt via a Nashville-area retailer, for example, the proceeds will be given to a credentialed hunger-relief effort in that region,” said Michael McClamroch, ETF president and CEO.
Funding from t-shirt sales will be collected and grants distributed by ETF in full coordination with the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga, The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee (based in Nashville) and the Community Foundation of Greater Memphis.
Tennessee nonprofit organizations with hunger relief and food distribution-related missions (such as community food pantries, school or faith-based meal programs, food-delivery services to homes) can apply for grants via their area’s community foundation website. To apply in East Tennessee, visit ETF’s Neighbor to Neighbor Disaster Relief Fund; in Chattanooga, visit www.cfgc.org; in Middle Tennessee, visit www.cfmt.org; in West Tennessee, visit www.cfgm.org.
All nonprofit grant recipients must apply in advance for #COVIDfeedTN funding and will be fully vetted and pre-screened by their respective region’s community foundation.
McClamroch said, “We’ve had such success with this fundraising model for such efforts as the Pat Summitt Foundation and Smoky Strong, and we would like to see it applied in this crisis situation as well, to benefit Tennesseans in need statewide.”
Online orders can be placed at http://covidfeedtn.shgstores.com or purchased at participating locations of Kroger, Food City and Pilot retailers across Tennessee.