The Y to focus on hunger relief and meal distribution in the communities it serves
YMCA of Metro Atlanta’s annual Days of Service event will look different from past events which gathered more than 2,000 volunteers to complete more than 20 community service projects over two days across metro Atlanta. This year, the Y is shifting its focus to meet one of the city’s most immediate needs, food insecurity.
Individuals can volunteer for the event at Cobb Galleria Centre on Sept. 11 during four different shifts to pack and distribute food to families and individuals in need. The Y’s goal for Sept. 11 is to pack 5,000 grocery bags to distribute across the metro area through Y branches and partners. Meal packing will be held in small, socially distanced shifts with required safety measures including masks and temperature checks to ensure the health and safety of staff and volunteers.
This year’s event will also include a three-week food drive instead of individual community service days at Y locations. From Aug. 24 to Sept. 11, nonperishable food items can be dropped off at any Y location throughout metro Atlanta. The organization aims to collect 2,000 pounds of food to provide to members of the community through the Y’s direct distribution programs and food pantries.
Days of Service also includes a community fundraising element. Through corporate partners and individual donations, the Y aims to raise $100,000 to support its day-to-day food distribution programs.
“The Y has been a lifeline to its communities throughout the last several months, delivering more than 277,000 meals to families, children and seniors in need,” said Lauren Koontz president and CEO of YMCA of Metro Atlanta. “Watching the community come together to serve one another during the Days of Service event is a reminder of the amazing things we can accomplish when we are united. Community support is needed now more than ever.”
In 2019, more than 2,000 volunteers completed 28 volunteer projects during the two-day event. Businesses, families, staff and volunteers, completed gardening projects, delivered school supplies, prepared and delivered meals and more. Days of Service began in 2018 in celebration of the Y’s 160 years of service to the Atlanta community.
For more information about how you can help YMCA of Metro Atlanta eliminate food insecurity through Days of Service, visit ymcaservice.org.
About the YMCA of Metro Atlanta
Since 1858, the YMCA of Metro Atlanta has been impacting lives and strengthening communities. As Atlanta has grown, the YMCA has also evolved to meet the changing needs of our community. Well-thought-out planning, while engaging stakeholders at various levels, provides the backdrop for sustainable change and positive impact at the YMCA of Metro Atlanta. By providing impactful services and support networks, and building bridges between people from all backgrounds, the Y has maintained its relevance, helping to create stronger, more cohesive communities for. all. https://www.ymcaatlanta.org/160