ATLANTA — Many more families may find themselves needing help with a meal this holiday season thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced thousands of layoffs, housing insecurity and other ripple effects.
On average in the United States, more than 37 million people struggle with hunger - and of them 11 million are children, according to reporting by non-profit organization Feeding America. But this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the organization estimates the number of people facing hunger has likely grown to more 50 million, including more than 17 million children.
There are resources for families who need it, including food distribution programs and food banks. 11Alive has compiled a few below to help.
This is not a comprehensive list. If you know of any more programs, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find a meal
Feeding America food banks
The Feeding America network of food banks, like partner Atlanta Community Food Bank, helps distributes 4.3 billion meals each year through food pantries and meal programs throughout the US.
Find one of metro Atlanta's food banks here.
Find more Georgia food banks here.
Feeding GA Families Thanksgiving Meal Event
The nonprofit organization, Feeding GA Families is hosting their Thanksgiving meal event for the local community.
This event does not require any registration. You must be present to receive a Thanksgiving Food Box.
The distribution is happening Monday, November 23 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at 2514 W Point Ave., Atlanta, GA 30337
To learn more about the Feeding GA Families Thanksgiving Meal Event, visit their website here.
On Wednesday, Nov. 25, Free Chapel will be doing a mobile food pantry giveaway to distribute 4,000 boxes of food that include meat, dairy, vegetables and fruit.
The giveaway will last from 5 to 8 p.m. at the church's locations in metro Atlanta:
- Midtown: 1439 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
- Gwinnett: 855 Northbrook Pkwy., Suwanee, GA 30024
- Gainesville: 3001 McEver Rd., Gainesville, GA 30504
This Thanksgiving, there will be no big, indoor, sit-down buffet for the 50th annual Hosea Williams Thanksgiving dinner. Instead, the yearly holiday meal celebration will be "to go," as a COVID precaution.
Volunteers will be outside the Georgia World Congress Center beginning at 10 a.m. to distribute the food boxes, which will contain a turkey, as well as canned foods. People can drive up, on Andrew Young International Boulevard, or they can walk up.
In order to participate, families must register. The event lasts until 2 p.m.
Register for the event here.
Meals on Wheels
Seniors can receive free or low cost meals and other food delivered to them from Meals on Wheels.
Every year, the Georgia Salvation Army helps feed hungry children and families during the holiday season. The Salvation Army Georgia Division hosts a Thanksgiving Drive that provides children and families with a nutritious Thanksgiving meal.
Find Thanksgiving food assistance from the Salvation Army here.
Through a promotion with Walmart, mobile rewards platform Ibotta, Campbell's, Butterball and Coca-Cola have teamed up to launch the Free Thanksgiving Dinner program in an effort to feed millions of American families this Thanksgiving.
The program runs through Thanksgiving, Nov. 26 at Walmarts nationwide or Walmart.com.
Simply download the Ibotta app or download Ibotta's web browser extension, click on the "Free Thanksgiving Dinner" offer and shop for your Thanksgiving items at any Walmart or at Walmart.com. Once purchased, scan your receipt into the Ibotta or link your Walmart Grocery account to verify the purchases, and you'll earn cash back for the entire purchase (approx. $20.27).
Share a meal
DoorDash announced a new feature called "Gifting," described as a "new way to help friends and families stay connected and show their love this holiday season through flavor-filled food gifts." Through the new feature, users can send a treats and meals to friends and family instantly or pre-schedule a drop on a special day. The feature will be available across all stores on DoorDash and Caviar.
Sponsor a meal
The organization SOME, So Others Might Eat, is offering a chance for people to donate the price of a Thanksgiving meal to families in need, which will cover the price of a grocery store gift card.
The Center for Family Resources is accepting donations to its “I’m thankful for” campaign during its Thanks for Giving event. Proceeds will go toward helping families in Cobb County for the holiday.