Tyler Perry provided groceries and gift cards for thousands of families in Atlanta on Sunday at his eponymous studios.
The event was drive-up only due to COVID-19 restrictions. Volunteers draped in protective gear handed out boxes of food and gift cards to those in need. Attendees were advised to remain masked while waiting in the line and whenever they communicated with the volunteers, who were floating from car to car.
On The Tyler Perry Studios Facebook and Instagram pages, it was stated: “During this drive-up event we will be distributing non-perishable food items and gift cards to people who are in need during this holiday season. See you there.”
With the nation suffering from the impact of COVID-19 on the economy, food security is a pressing issue for many people. Feeding America has projected that one in six people, including one in four children will experience food insecurity in 2020.
The line for the generous giveaway stretched for five miles for part of the day, clogging traffic in the city. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio ran out of food by 10 a.m. “Although we wish that we could feed everyone in need, we will close the line at the 5,000th family,” it stated on the flyer for the event.
This isn’t the first time Perry had spread holiday cheer in the form of financial relief. The entertainment mogul wiped out Walmart layaway balances of 1,500 holiday shoppers in the greater Atlanta area in 2018. The gesture reportedly cost $434,000. Perry explained why he chose to help in a video on his Instagram page.
“I know it’s hard times and a lot of people are struggling,” he said.
“I’m just really, really grateful to be able to be in a situation to do this. So God bless you. Go get your stuff.”