SEPTEMBER 14, 2020
With COVID-19 resulting in extended school closures, reductions in employment, and isolation, children and their families are facing unprecedented challenges in getting the food they need. We at the Wills Group have sought to help alleviate some of the strain that our food banks are facing, with the ultimate goal of helping to flatten the hunger curve. While we are proud of the contributions we have made to date to help address this increased demand for food, the need still remains.
According to Feeding America, an estimated additional 17.1 million people are expected to experience food insecurity as a result of the pandemic.
Philanthropic Donations to Date:
Through the Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund, we have donated $200,000 across 4 regional food bank partners and local food pantries – including Maryland Food Bank, Food Bank of Delaware, Feed More of Richmond, and Capital Area Food Bank.
For more information about the Wills Group’s philanthropic donations to date, please see below:
Lifting Up for Our Local Heroes:
In April, Dash In launched two efforts to to help lift up our local heroes by showing appreciation for health care professionals and first responders who are working on the frontlines during the coronavirus pandemic.
To read more about Dash In’s efforts to lift up our local heroes, please see below:
The Wills Group is committed to keeping Lives in Motion and ensuring people in need have opportunities to achieve their hopes and dreams. In partnership with high-impact charitable organizations and our passionate employees, the Wills Group continues to make meaningful investments in the future of the communities in which we work by ensuring kids facing hunger get enough food to eat and neighborhoods are vibrant and welcoming.
Building on the success of our Community Engagement program to-date and deepening our impact in local communities across our Mid-Atlantic footprint, the Wills Group will move communities forward through three pillars:
Providing our employees with the resources, tools, and support they need to be the best for themselves and for others.
Ensuring kids facing hunger get the food they need to learn, grow, and thrive.
Enhancing vibrant and welcoming outdoor spaces for our neighbors to gather.
Our partners are an integral part of the work that we are able to accomplish in the communities we serve. In 2019, we worked closely with 13 charitable organizations to bring nutritious meals to hungry children and provide meaningful resources for community members in need.
The Wills Group annual Community Engagement Reports provide an overview of our commitment to deliver on our promise throughout each fiscal year to move individuals and communities forward, ensuring people in need have opportunities to achieve their hopes and dreams.
The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund was created in remembrance of our former President Julian Blacklock “Blackie” Wills and his commitment to giving back to local communities. Carrying on this tradition, The Wills Group created the Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund to actively reinvest in the communities in which we operate and ensure that everyone has the opportunity to get their basic needs met and create a better future for themselves and their children.
The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund is a component fund within Chesapeake Charities, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Committee Members list