UGA Med Student Starts Statewide Fundraiser For Frontline Workers

A group of medical students is doing its part to help those working on the frontlines to make sure they get a hot meal. Anita Qualls, executive director of Feedthefrontlinesga tells WSB a group of friends got together and came up with the idea.

"I was sitting at home because of the state-at-home order in Georgia, just feeling frustrated as a future medical student that I wasn't able to do very much. I talked to my friend, who is also a medical student in New York, and they've been rolling out a very similar program," said Qualls.

Qualls says she and several others began coordinating and contacting restaurants near hospitals to donate and deliver those meals to workers on the frontlines in the hospitals.

"Since Thursday morning, things moved really quickly. My friends have been amazing in getting this off the ground. We raised over $10,000 in four days and now we have coordinators in metro Atlanta, Athens, Macon, Albany, Augusta, and Savannah. We are also working out a date right now for donations in ICU for Grady, the V-A, Emory main hospital, and Emory Midtown," said Qualls.

Qualls says their goal is to get the meals to those on the frontline with as few hands touching them as possible.

"We're trying to focus on local, like mom and pop restaurants, instead of chains, because we really want to help those stay in business; and we're getting the food delivered directly from the restaurant to the point of contact at the hospital," said Qualls.

Qualls says their first delivery, about 40 meals, will be delivered on Tuesday at Emory at St. Joseph's.

"These hospital workers a lot of times are just so slammed and so stressed out that they are not even able to get a hot meal during their shift at all. And a lot of the cafeterias in the hospital are actually shutting down because of the Coronavirus," said Qualls.

Qualls says they eventually want to help other hospitals, not just in metro Atlanta, but in places like hard-hit Albany, Georgia.

"Your donations are 100 percent going to buying meals from local restaurants and feeding the healthcare workers on the frontline," said Qualls.

If you'd like more information, go to feedthefrontlinesga.org.





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