Kora has always known what it means to stretch a dollar. A mother of children ranging from 22 to five years old, she often extends a helping hand to her children's’ friends, offering a haven for those that need it in addition to caring for her godmother. But even with multiple incomes, budgeting, and getting things on sale, it can be a challenge to feed everyone who ends up under her roof.
She found Hugs and Hope, a partner agency of the Atlanta Community Food Bank in Snellville, and, in the process, felt her prayers were answered.
“I was so grateful. The cereals that we always want to buy, but we can't afford to buy because [they] cost too much. The bread and the veggies and the meat, you know, were amazing. It’s been an overwhelming blessing.”
During the pandemic, everything changed. ‘I was trying to take care of my mom, and trying to be a teacher to my [younger] kids. My fiancé is working from home. Teenagers are there. It went from peace and quiet to everybody's there, everybody wants to eat. Everybody needs a snack. Everybody's thirsty. And it was just like, oh my God, what am I gonna do?” she said. “So the [food pantry] came through amazingly with snacks and fruit cups and juices and bread and lunch meat. Being able to sit down and have meals together and not be worried about where the food comes from, you know, was a true blessing.”
Kora feels the struggle of appearances affecting people’s perception of who needs help.
“I make a decent income. But when you have that many people in your house, it doesn’t really matter how decent your income is. Being at home, you’ve got more utilities, you've got more water, gas, you know, groceries increased, you're cooking more often because we're in the house all day. It's still hard to financially get by.”
Kora is grateful to Hugs and Hope and the Food Bank for the peace of mind she gets in addition to the groceries.
“One hundred times, I will say thank you. It has definitely affected my family in a positive way.”