Over the past seven months, Rotary Clubs of Rotary District 6910 have been serving a multitude of meals to food insecure families. And their goal to distribute a million meals across North Georgia was recently reached.
The effort launched when Rotary Zones 33 and 34 (spanning the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern US and Caribbean countries from Pennsylvania to the coast of South America) announced their Feed 10 Million Challenge to provide 10 million meals this year. In response, Rotary District 6910 Governor Tina Fischlin set a goal of serving one tenth of those meals in North Georgia.
To date, Rotary District 6910, which includes all of the Gwinnett County clubs, is the only district within Rotary Zones 33 and 34 to provide 1 million meals to food insecure families. With 150 food projects sponsored by 32 clubs in the district so far, the Rotary organization has fed countless community members of North Georgia in response to the devastating impact of the pandemic.
“There are still so many people in need and so many willing hearts to help. We won’t stop here,” said Randy Redner, District 6910’s Feed 10 Million Challenge Chair and President/CEO of the Community Foundation for Northeast Georgia. “Just in Gwinnett, we have two more tractor-trailer loads coming in February. That’s at least another 64,000 meals. Rotarians all across the District are making a huge difference.”
As of Feb. 11, more than 625 tons of food and 1,073,442 meals have been distributed to local families in need — and that number is rising. Because of Rotary District 6910’s heart to serve local communities, 13 counties have and will continue to receive necessary food assistance. Those counties include Gwinnett, Hall, Forsyth, Oconee, Greene, Putnam, Jasper, Gilmer and Clayton.
Rotary District 6910 has supported thousands of individuals through the pandemic. COVID-19 related job losses and closures have caused a significant increase in food insecure individuals in Rotary District 6910 counties. According to the Georgia Food Bank Association the number of food insecure people in these counties have increased by 67%. Since COVID-19, more than 175,000 new individuals have become food insecure in these areas.
Rotary District 6910 recognizes the increased need for support and has taken action. Gwinnett County Rotary Clubs specifically have delivered more than 362,000 meals and those clubs have pledge to continue to support and care for the community.
“Rotarians are people of action and this effort truly shows that Rotary has heart,” Rotary District 6910 Governor Tina Fischlin said. “I want to give our clubs another challenge now. We can’t stop here. We need to keep up the good work, providing meals to all of those in need in our communities, and see to it that not one child on our watch goes to bed hungry.
“Thanks to everyone partnering with us on this mission.”