In the midst of all of this bad news, there is some good coming from it. The Falcons announced on Tuesday that quarterback Matt Ryan will donate $100,000 to help charities in Atlanta in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
Atlanta’s local reporter for FOX 5 shared that Ryan’s donation will be equally distributed between two charitable organizations, Atlanta Community Food Bank needy and Giving Kitchen.
Atlanta Community Food Bank provides foods to the needy and Giving Kitchen offers emergency assistance to food service workers.
There have been 121 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state of Georgia, according to Georgia Health Department. The figures show that one has died so far. Georgia has declared a state emergency for 30 days on March 14. Also, Atlanta’s Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms put in place a temporary ban of large public gatherings to keep people safe and minimize the spread of the virus.
Making An Impact
Ryan spoke with ESPN Tuesday morning and said “it made sense” for his family to try to make an impact to help people in need.
“Obviously there’s a ton of stuff going on right now with a lot of areas that need a lot of help, and we certainly have a lot of friends in the restaurant and food industry here in Atlanta,” Ryan told ESPN. “We felt like [Giving Kitchen] is a unique and cool organization that has helped different restaurants, people in that industry. We thought it would create awareness for one of the industries that’s going to struggle during this time. The Atlanta Food Bank is obviously another organization that does a great job. Certainly, there is a great need for funding there. It made sense for us to try and make a small impact.”
Ryan empathizes with restaurant servers and bartenders who will suffer through this time while places close down and people can’t eat out.
“These places aren’t getting their typical income, so hopefully this helps [the workers] get through a little bit of a difficult time,” Ryan said. “We’re not sure how long this is going be or how slow it’s going to be during this time. Hopefully, we can help people get through the next week or two to help cover their bases.’’
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COVID-19 Affects NFL
It began last week when coaches and scouts were prohibited from traveling. The Pro Days were canceled. Soon everyone was worrying about the NFL Draft which will still go on, but public events are canceled.
This Monday, the league announced teams will delay the start of their offseason programs until further notice. The Falcons closed their facility until March 27 and were supposed to start their offseason on April 20, no the date is unknown.
“You’ve got to be prepared for whatever comes up,’’ Ryan said. “As this point, while the offseason program is important to us, I think there are more important things in society that we need to take care of. I think that’s where everybody’s head is at during this time.”