Over the next 6 weeks, 150,000 nutritious, healthy, and high-quality meals, prepared by local restaurants, will be served to Oakland students and their families through a $1.5 million grant from Kaiser Permanente to Stephen and Ayesha Curry’s Eat. Learn. Play. Foundation.
When schools closed in mid-March, Eat. Learn. Play. mobilized to distribute food to Oakland youth and their families with partners including Chef Jose Andres’ World Central Kitchen. Since then, Eat. Learn. Play. has helped distribute 1 million meals. Kaiser Permanente’s grant will continue the “Feed Oakland” effort that will allow Eat. Learn. Play. to distribute meals at Oakland schools into the fall.
“Kaiser Permanente is so pleased to partner with the Currys and support Eat. Learn. Play., which is stepping up to feed Oakland families while supporting local restaurants during this time of uncertainty and economic downturn.”
The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic crisis has caused hunger to grow drastically in Oakland and around the country, primarily due to school closings and rising unemployment. One in 6 kids in the United States, and 1 in 4 kids in Oakland and the Bay Area, are currently affected by hunger and food insecurity, including at least 18,000 children who rely on school meals.
“My relationship with Kaiser Permanente goes way back, so this in many ways is a continuation, a growth of our partnership, and Ayesha and I are so happy to be working with them on behalf of Eat. Learn. Play.,” said Stephen Curry, co-founder. “We’ve always known that food insecurity was a big issue in Oakland, which is why ‘Eat,’ one of our key pillars in the foundation, was set in place. We believe that food is power. It brings families together — a vessel for communication, love, and happiness, and we want to be able to show how food has an integral impact on people’s lives.”
Diminishing Food Insecurity
The Kaiser Permanente grant will help Eat. Learn. Play. and its partners continue to focus on diminishing food insecurity among Oakland families while also reducing unemployment. The grant enables Eat. Learn. Play. to continue to work in partnership with World Central Kitchen and 130 local restaurants to produce and deliver 150,000 meals to students and their families.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has upended our food system and magnified already existing inequalities,” said Ayesha Curry, the foundation’s co-founder. “We are incredibly thankful for the very generous grant provided by the amazing Kaiser Permanente team, which allows us to continue our ‘Feed Oakland’ efforts. This will help provide 150,000 healthy and nutritious meals to Oakland students and their families who face food insecurity. While we have been able to scale very quickly, because of all of our partners, Stephen and I want all the work Eat. Learn. Play. does in Oakland and the Bay Area to be amplified nationwide. That way, we can ensure our next generation has access to everything they need.”
Eat. Learn. Play. and Kaiser Permanente are committed to ensuring children continue to have access to nutritious meals so they can be successful in school. Kaiser Permanente recognizes not having food on the table is a barrier to good health.
“Kaiser Permanente is so pleased to partner with the Currys and support Eat. Learn. Play., which is stepping up to feed Oakland families while supporting local restaurants during this time of uncertainty and economic downturn,” said Gregory Adams, Kaiser Permanente Chairman and CEO. “What Stephen and Ayesha are doing is very special — they are really serving as young role models and leaders to make a true difference for Bay Area community health.”