Minneapolis comes together to bring food to community devastated by protests

A community comes out to support those impacted by the protests in South Minneapolis.

A view inside a Target store through a broken window on May 27, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Businesses near the 3rd Police Precinct were looted and damaged today as the area has become the site of an ongoing protest after the police killing of George Floyd. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Minneapolis has stepped up in a big way for a neighborhood that has been devastated by protests. The area around the destroyed third precinct in the South Minneapolis neighborhood has not only been beset by media and protestors, but it has also seen businesses looted and destroyed, including grocery stores.

READ MORE: George Floyd’s family condemns violence as he was a ‘man of peace’

A call went out this weekend to volunteers willing to bring food for the arear’s residents who’d lost their food sources. As the coronavirus had already impacted the city, many were already struggling with food availability.

(Photo: Tina Samepay)

Sanford middle school became the drop-off point and in one of the few positive stories in the midst of a week of protests, it was swarmed with donations from all around the state.

“The area has become a food desert for these families, many of whom don’t own a vehicle to drive elsewhere,” Amy Nelson, the principal of Sanford Middle School, told The Washington Post.

 

The city’s metro public transportation has been suspended which hurt the community even more, including the city’s schoolchildren, who still relied on school food services despite the pandemic.

Nelson put the call out for food and other necessities, and it was amplified by social media. But no one expected the kind of turnout they got.

According to Fox 9, even a U-Haul pulled up with food and supplies to the embattled neighborhood.

The school received 30,000 food kits, according to the Post, which allowed 500 families to stock up. Extra food was distributed to local food organizations in need.

“Prior to the pandemic, there were over 200,000 kids that lived with food insecurity in Minnesota,” Rob Williams, founder of the non-profit The Sheridan Story told the Post. “If you add COVID-19 and the current unrest that’s going on, there is a sudden, acute need for food.”

Despite the tensions that have roiled the city and the inequities and police abuse that have come to light in the wake of George Floyd‘s death by police, Minneapolis residents say the outpouring of support is what they’ve come to expect.

READ MORE: World outrage grows at Floyd’s death

“People of all backgrounds and races were picking up food and helping each other,” Mara Bernick, the family liaison for Sanford Middle School said. “And that’s what Minneapolis is. That is who we are. We take care of each other.”

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