Dear friends,

Last week I had lunch with Winnie Varghese, the rector of St. Luke’s downtown. She told me about a project they are involved in during the school year — sending backpacks full of food home with kids on Fridays to help them through the weekend. One little girl thanked a St. Luke’s member and said, “Before we got this food I ate on Saturday and my brother ate on Sunday. Now we can eat every day.”

Think about that. We’re not talking about starving children in Africa. We’re talking about starving children in Atlanta, right under our noses. In the richest country on the planet children are assigned days on which they can eat. If you want to know the definition of sin, there it is. That a country that has the resources that we do allows this to happen is not only sinful, it’s evil.

When I got back to the office that day I received the email below from Jennifer Barnes, one of the founders of the Solidarity Food Pantry, reminding us that summer vacation means increased food insecurity for many of our neighbors.

During the pandemic the vestry chose to focus our outreach efforts on supporting local food pantries. We supported four pantries financially. And every week you brought a mountain of food to church for one of the Solidarity Sandy Springs pantries. Every week Elise McIntyre filled her car with the bounty you dropped off and delivered it to the pantry.

School is out now, which means it is time for us to step up our game in supporting the pantry. Solidarity is serving 100 families more than this time last year. They need financial donations to buy fresh produce and meats, and they need donations of food. Jennifer’s email tells how to donate financially. And the next time you are at the grocery store please consider picking up even just a few extras to donate to the pantry. Our neighbors need our help.

With love,


Dear Solidarity Community,
Would it surprise you to know that 1 in 2 elementary school children in SANDY SPRINGS rely on school breakfasts and lunches for their nourishment? I still find this number shocking, even in the 3rd year of Solidarity Food Pantry operations. We live in one of the highest per capita cities in the US and yet food insecurity is very real for some of our neighbors. 

Summertime is especially challenging, creating worry and anxiety for some parents over the responsibility of feeding children two more daily meals. Childcare costs often prevent one parent from being able to work during the summer. While the COVID pandemic is over, inflation and the cost of food and rising rents make it a challenge for even the working food-insecure to make ends meet.  

This time last year we were serving 450-500 shoppers per week. For the last 4 weeks we have served over 600 shoppers each week with new faces showing up daily. Our fresh produce budget a year ago was $3,000-3,500 per week. We are now budgeting $4,000-4,500 per week. We need your help now more than ever!

Please help us fund our Summer of Abundance to cover the cost of fresh produce, meat and dairy for the summer which is $65,000. To kick us off we have a matching grant for the first $1,000. If you would like to help with matching funds we would be so grateful.

We discovered on this mission that our community is generous to a level that makes us proud to call Sandy Springs home! Thanks to our community, Sandy Springs will not be a food insecurity statistic. We will continue to be Neighbors Helping Neighbors.

Yours Appreciatively in Food, Hope and Love,

Our Contact Information
Solidarity Sandy Springs Inc
860 Johnson Ferry Road NE
Sandy Springs, GA 30342
(470) 387-0551

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