Threatened by COVID-19, Atlanta non-profit Open Hand is urging people to donate.

Open Hand launched 30 years ago to serve those affected by HIV/AIDS. Now, the organization helps people prevent or better manage chronic disease through Comprehensive Nutrition Care, combining home-delivered meals and nutrition education to those in need.

A majority of the clients Open Hand serves are elderly or living with chronic or underlying health conditions—two groups at a higher risk of seeing the negative effects of the coronavirus. In response to both worries that services could be interrupted by the virus and an increased demand as result of the virus, Open Hand has ramped up their production of frozen and shelf stable meals.

Because of this increase in production, Open Hand has to increase expenses for additional food product, sanitation supplies, overtime labor, and the rental of a large, commercial freezer trailer. To help Open Hand meet these financial demands and provide life-saving services to those who may be affected by COVID-19, you can donate here.

“Your donation will go a long way in alleviating the immediate burden of these unforeseen and unbudgeted expenses and help ensure that there is much less chance of disruption in our service,” Open Hand Executive Director Matt Pieper said in an emailed statement. “Our priority is the health and safety of our clients and making sure that they have what they need to make it through the coming weeks.”

Many volunteers have also backed out due to new “work from home” policies or fears of getting sick., Open Hand also urges those who are healthy enough to volunteer their time with the organization.

As Open Hand Atlanta plans to significantly ramp up meal production over the next few days in order to pre-deliver a…

Posted by Open Hand Atlanta on Monday, March 16, 2020

You can register to volunteer here.

“[H]owever you decide to help Open Hand during this time, we ask that you keep our thousands of clients in your hearts,” Pieper said, “for just as we are facing uncertainty and concern, so too are they.”

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