The city of Minneapolis has been at the forefront of protests surrounding racial inequality and police brutality. George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis police custody sparked the protests there and around the nation. And the protests have had some unintended effects, including causing many stores to temporarily shutter to prevent damage and looting. This has left some communities without the grocery stores they depend on.
When one middle school in the city realized their community had suddenly become a food desert, they partnered with a non-profit to quickly organize a food drive. They hoped to receive around 500 bags of food to help feed the hungry in their community. They ended up receiving more than 29,000.
Residents of the city came out in droves after posts about the food-drive went viral. Cars lined up for blocks, temporarily causing a traffic jam of people who wanted to give back and help their community.
“The thankfulness was palpable,” Rob Williams, the director of the nonprofit, The Sheridan Story, told Good Morning America. “This area became a food desert in 24 hours with no warning, and people really needed this food immediately. There were tears all around.”
In Minneapolis, Sanford Middle School asked for food donations, after several supermarkets were looted or damaged during the riots.
This is what happened.
Cars were backed up for more than ten blocks — all from people who came to dropoff food. pic.twitter.com/RFT1P2YT7D
— Goodable (@Goodable) May 31, 2020
The principal of the school said the donations were ‘incredible’ and covered the parking lot, the field, and the entire surrounding area. She said they came from people who wanted to do something tangible to help.
They were left with a surplus of food that is now being donated at other points throughout the city to help feed the hungry.
“This all happened organically through other Minnesota families and locals who care about them as people,” Williams said. “That is what a community is supposed to be, you rally around each other with your time, food or whatever is needed, and get it to those who need help.”