Mississippi Food Network helps with food insecurity amid pandemic

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – The coronavirus pandemic has impacted thousands of people across Mississippi and has only added to the food insecurity issues.

Organizers at the Mississippi Food Network have ordered extra food in anticipation to feed even more people than they already have this year. The group distributes food year round. They have distributed almost 13 million more pounds of food compared to last year.

Kelly Mott, director of external affairs for the Mississippi Food Network, said in a normal year, the warehouse would be full of food bins from in-person donations. Although there haven’t been as many in-person donations this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual food drives have increased.

“This year, we have been blessed beyond measure to see an increase in donations. Mississippians always seen to show up and show out, and we are so appreciative to our donors that continue to give so that we can meet the need of our hungry neighbors,” stated Mott.

The organization received a major donation from Kroger on Thursday. The grocery store chain donated more than 1,700 food boxes, which contain non-perishable food items.

Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott, who recently made donations to Alcorn State University and Tougaloo College, donated $9 million to the Mississippi Food Network. This is the single largest donation the organization has ever had. Scott is the former wife of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

“MacKenzie Scott’s investment in Mississippi is a vote of confidence in the work we are all doing together to end hunger in our great state,” said Mississippi Food Network CEO Charles Beady. “From our more than 400 member agencies and our food donors, to all the individuals, businesses and foundations that support us with financial contributions at every level – we should all feel proud to receive this national and international recognition.”

If you would like to make a donation to the Mississippi Food Network, click here.

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