For Immediate Release
Alicia Sands Lurry, Atlanta Public Schools, [email protected], 404-802-2880
Eric Slutsky, GENYOUth, [email protected], 917-391-6709
Sherri Simmons, Kroger, [email protected], 404-446-1660
Rebecca Egsieker, The Dairy Alliance, [email protected], 770-842-2046
ATLANTA, GA (August 20, 2020) – GENYOUth, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to creating healthier school communities, announced today the donation of $100,000 to its COVID-19 Emergency School Meal Delivery Fund by the Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation. The donation, along with support from GENYOUth in partnership with The Dairy Alliance, will provide micro-grants for Atlanta Public Schools, one of Georgia’s largest districts, as it prepares to nourish students during the unprecedented 2020-2021 school year.
Due to school disruptions caused by the pandemic, school meal distribution will be more logistically complicated and costly this coming school year. While school cafeterias will be closed, the district will continue to provide vital school meals to students via school bus delivery and curbside pickup. In accordance with the new 2020-2021 Centers for Disease Control recommended guidelines, Kroger’s donation will support the purchase of insulated cooler bags to ensure the safe transport, delivery, and distribution of meals to students throughout the District.
A total of 54 Atlanta Public Schools are part of Community Eligibility Provision (CEP), which provides all students with free breakfast and lunch. And an additional 21 schools will participate in the Federal Eligibility Application (FEA) program, which offers free and reduced-price meals to qualifying students. Atlanta Public Schools will continue participation in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Program, which is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture’s school nutrition program.
"In an effort to take care of our families Atlanta Public Schools is extremely grateful and appreciative of the support of GENYOUth, Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation, and The Dairy Alliance,” said APS Superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring. “This generous donation will allow a shift from traditional cafeteria meal service to student meal distribution through school bus delivery and curbside pickup. These partnerships help to align with our families’ expectations of available fresh, wholesome foods in the community that are comparable to school meals.”
“The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation supports efforts to create communities free of hunger and waste, improve food security, and bring balanced meals to families in need,” said Felix Turner, Corporate Affairs Manager, Kroger Atlanta Division. “It is crucial that our children have access to fresh food, which would not happen without the Atlanta Public Schools meal delivery program. We are excited to be a part of the team that is helping to ensure that fresh meals can be safely stored and delivered to students. This donation is a testament to Kroger’s commitment to our vision of Zero Hunger | Zero Waste and our commitment to the communities we serve. To date, Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation has directed more than $9.3 million to urgent COVID-19 response initiatives including GENYOUth’s COVID-19 Emergency School Meal Delivery Fund.”
Nearly 1 in 4 US children now live in food insecurity, and over 30 million students rely on school meal programs for a substantial portion of their daily nutrition. GENYOUth established the Emergency School Meal Delivery Fund in March of this year to help schools across the nation obtain the resources and equipment necessary to ensure continuity of school meal programs during the pandemic. To date, GENYOUth’s fund has provided over $9 million in cash and in-kind grants to 8,000 schools.
“The continuity of school meals for our nation’s kids is more important than ever to combat hunger during the pandemic,” said Alexis Glick, CEO of GENYOUth. “Schools can’t do this alone, and partnerships are crucial to filling the gap. The support provided by Kroger for Atlanta Public Schools means that students will not have to worry about where their next school meal will come from. We thank them for their generosity and commitment.”
“On behalf of the dairy farm families of Georgia and the Southeast, The Dairy Alliance is proud to partner with Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation, Atlanta Public Schools and GENYOUth to help work towards ending food insecurity for Georgia families across the state,” said Molly Szymanski, CEO of The Dairy Alliance. “The hard-working dairy farmers strive every day to provide high-quality, nutritious milk, and other dairy foods to help nourish those who need it most.”
GENYOUth is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that creates healthier school communities. We convene a network of private and public partners, including Fortune 100 companies and foundations, to raise funds for youth wellness initiatives that give youth the inspiration, motivation, and programs to be healthy high-achieving students. GENYOUth’s flagship program, Fuel Up to Play 60, enrolls over 73,000 U.S. schools, reaching over 38 million students. Our school nutrition grants increase access to healthy school meals among food-insecure students. NFL FLAG-In-School is GENYOUth’s fastest-growing program with over 20,000+ school communities reaching over 11 million students, while AdVenture Capital brings out the entrepreneurial spirit and creativity of students with the support of corporate mentors to solve real-world problems. For more information about GENYOUth or to make a donation, visit www.genyouthnow.org.
At The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR), we are Fresh for Everyone™ and dedicated to our purpose: To Feed the Human Spirit®. We are 30,000 associates who serve customers daily by delivering a seamless shopping experience throughout Kroger’s Atlanta Division, which includes Georgia, Eastern Alabama, and South Carolina. We are committed to creating #zerohungerzerowaste communities by 2025. To learn more about us, visit our newsroom and investor relations site.
About Atlanta Public Schools
Atlanta Public Schools is one of the largest school districts in the state of Georgia, serving approximately 52,000 students across 87 schools. The District is organized into nine K-12 clusters with 58 traditional schools, 18 charter schools, six partner schools, two citywide single-gender academies, and three alternative programs. To learn more about Atlanta Public Schools, follow us on social media – Twitter (@apsupdate), Facebook (Atlanta Public Schools), and Instagram (apsupdate) – or visit us online at www.atlantapublicschools.us.
About The Dairy Alliance
On behalf of dairy farm families, The Dairy Alliance, a nonprofit, works with schools, health professionals, retailers, dairy processors, and the public to promote dairy foods. For more information, visit thedairyalliance.com.