Pinellas County, Fla. (April 20, 2020)— President and CEO of RCS Pinellas Kirk Ray Smith announced today a bold, new campaign to address hunger in Pinellas County during the global pandemic: Canning the Coronavirus: 30K in 30 Days.
“There are only two types of people in the world when it comes to human and social services: those in a position of need and those in a position to meet the need. We’ll all experience being in both positions at some point in our lifetime; this is what makes us both humble and proud,” he said.
One member of the Pinellas County community who finds himself in a position to meet the need is Canning the Coronavirus: 30K in 30 Days campaign sponsor Dan Shouvlin of Clear Sky and Frenchy’s restaurants and RCS Pinellas President’s Circle member.
“We’re truly seeing how great the need is in the county,” Shouvlin said. “With more than 30 percent of those employed in Florida working in the hospitality industry, and with local bars, restaurants and hotels closed, anything you can do will help—30 cents, a dollar, $30 or $30,000, we’ll make it work for the community.”
Shouvlin, who has pledged a matching donation of up to $5,000, said that the 30K in 30 Days Campaign will fund the purchase of 40,000 pounds of food to address coronavirus-related food insecurity in Pinellas County—enough to fill a 48-foot truck! Through this campaign, RCS Pinellas will provide 25,000 meals for individuals, seniors and families in need.
That’s over and above the 70,000 neighbors RCS Pinellas already serves annually—more than the seating capacity of Raymond James Stadium—and 32,000 of these are senior citizens and children. Annually, without the additional economic strain of a worldwide pandemic, RCS Pinellas distributes more than 6 million pounds of food and supports nearly 100 other local food banks and pantries.
Of Shouvlin’s generosity and philanthropic example, Smith says, “The COVID-19 crisis has impacted us all in one form or another. There is no denying that societal issues such this have a way of bringing out the best and worst in people; we are grateful that you, Dan, represent the former.
“If you or someone you know is in need of our assistance, please know we have resources for you at rcspinellas.org. Or if you would like to join us in supporting our community, you can make a gift to the 30K in 30 Days campaign to provide help and hope at rcspinellas.org/30-in-30.”
RCS Pinellas has provided help & hope to people in need for 50 years. RCS’s mission is to feed the hungry, help families facing homelessness return to self-sufficiency, and empower survivors of domestic violence. Over 130,000 Pinellas County individuals are served annually with dignity to accomplish this mission at the RCS Food Bank, the RCS Grace House, The Haven of RCS, RCS Affordable Housing, RCS Energy Assistance Program, and RCS thrift store partnerships. For more information on RCS, visit www.rcspinellas.org or call 727-584-3528.