Eastman Foundation Contributes to Appalachian Sustainable Development
KINGSPORT, TENN., April 13, 2021 – In support of continued COVID-19 pandemic relief efforts, Eastman Foundation awarded a grant of $40,000 to Appalachian Sustainable Development (ASD) to help further the organization’s mission to provide access to healthy food across the region.
ASD will use the funds from Eastman Foundation to buy and transport food across the Appalachian Highlands region, ensuring partners in the most remote communities continue to have food to feed families. ASD will buy produce from local/regional farmers when it is available and will also work with partners in the mid-Atlantic to bring USDA food boxes back to the region.
“We are so honored by Eastman Foundation’s faith in and support of our work. We have had the privilege of serving thousands of people over the last year and partnered with dozens of regional partners to get food to those in need. As we begin to recover from the pandemic, we are so grateful for partners like Eastman Foundation and for the opportunity to continue this work in 2021,” explained Kathlyn Terry, ASD’s Chief Executive Officer.
In 2004, ASD started Healthy Families – Family Farms to provide people in need with access to fresh, healthy, local produce while providing farmers with an additional income stream by raising money from the community to buy their seconds produce. “Seconds” are healthy, nutritious fruits and vegetables that do not meet the strict aesthetic grade for grocery store chains. Between 2004 and early 2020, Healthy Families – Family Farms donated over 1.3 million pounds of fresh, healthy food to food banks and food pantries. Because of COVID-19, this program has undergone a rapid expansion to meet the increasing demand of rural families that were already struggling to make ends meet. ASD donated 2.2 million pounds of food to those in need between March and December of 2020 and expects to grow that to over 5 million pounds in 2021.
The donation to Appalachian Sustainable Development is part of a commitment by Eastman Foundation to contribute $1 million toward supporting global relief efforts in 2021 as organizations continue to work through the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in their communities. Eastman’s COVID grants aim to address the growing gap between the need for essential resources by the most vulnerable and underserved populations and the capacity of communities to meet those needs. Organizations receiving Eastman Foundation grants include those established to provide food, housing, childcare, health, and educational support increasingly needed during the pandemic.
“While the pandemic has created significant hardships within our community, we remain hopeful that brighter days are ahead of us,” said Willie McLain, Eastman’s Chief Financial Officer and Eastman Foundation President. “On behalf of Eastman Foundation, I appreciate ASD’s ongoing efforts to help ensure individuals and families in our community have access to healthy food, especially given the unique challenges presented by the COVID-19 situation over the last year. We are proud to help their great work continue.”
In 2020, Eastman Foundation provided $1 million in funding to organizations for food, shelter, medical supplies, and personal protective equipment for frontline workers. Helping communities flatten the infection-rate curve was a priority. One year later, Eastman is focused on flattening the resource-needs curve to help families and communities minimize the social and economic upheaval of their daily lives due to the pandemic.
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About Appalachian Sustainable Development
Living Better. Locally. It’s what drives ASD’s commitment to propel its mission to build a thriving regional food and agriculture system that creates healthy communities, respects the planet, and cultivates profitable opportunities for Appalachians. Since 1995, ASD has been working in Central Appalachia, providing hope, and making a difference for the people who call the region home. What began as opportunities for struggling tobacco farmers to grow fruits and vegetables have become lasting solutions to regional challenges that impact economic development, workforce development, food access, health, and wellness. Over the years, ASD has expanded its reach from northeast TN and southwest VA to include partners in WV, OH and KY, enabling the organization to bring resources back to the region. For more information, visit https://asdevelop.org.
Founded in 1920, Eastman is a global specialty materials company that produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With the purpose of enhancing the quality of life in a material way, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. The company’s innovation-driven growth model takes advantage of world-class technology platforms, deep customer engagement, and differentiated application development to grow its leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction, and consumables. As a globally inclusive and diverse company, Eastman employs approximately 14,500 people around the world and serves customers in more than 100 countries. The company had 2020 revenues of approximately $8.5 billion and is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA. For more information, visit www.eastman.com.
About Eastman Foundation
Eastman Foundation invests in initiatives that serve and strengthen communities around the world and improve the quality of life. The Foundation focuses its resources on organizations and projects in the areas of education, environment, empowerment and economic development. Learn more about Eastman Foundation at eastmanfoundation.com.
|Amanda AllmanEastman Corporate Communicationsaallman@eastman.com423.229.1025||Sylvia CrumDirector of Communications and Developmentscrum@asdevelop.org276-623-1121|