Greater Gift Celebrates COVID-19 Research Study Participants with a $2,000 donation to Second Harvest of NWNC

Winston Salem, North Carolina – Greater Gift announces donations to local agencies committed to diversity in honor of participants in the COVID-19 Community Research Partnership Study. In addition to Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina, the following collaborators will receive $2,000 each once certain benchmarks are reached during the research study: The Twenty, Inc., The Hispanic League, HUSTLE Winston Salem, and Alpha Pi Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.

Executive Director Lilly Skok Bunch stated, “Greater Gift is passionate about engaging underrepresented populations in clinical research and building trustworthiness to populations who traditionally and understandably are reluctant to participate in clinical research. By making donations to support our partners in the community, we hope to build bridges and ultimately trustworthiness across communities.”

The COVID-19 Community Research Partnership is working to gather data through a multi-site study sponsored by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and led by Wake Forest Baptist Health. The study encourages volunteers to report daily exposures, symptoms, risk-reduction behaviors such as wearing a mask, and whether they have received a flu or COVID-19 vaccine. Over 22,000 clinical trial volunteers are completing daily online questionnaires to track possible exposures and symptoms. To encourage volunteers to complete daily symptom surveys, Greater Gift donated $2,000 to Second Harvest of Northwest NC when trial volunteers reached the milestone of 2.25 million daily entries.

According to Eric Aft of Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC, “The COVID-19 pandemic threatens the lives and livelihoods of all of us and the most vulnerable members of society are in position to fare the worst. The same individuals who are being most adversely affected by the economic recession are at the highest risk for COVID-19.” Pre-pandemic data indicated the lowest food insecurity rates in more than 20 years, but the current crisis has reversed improvements made over the past decade since the Great Recession.

Greater Gift’s Executive Director, Lilly Skok Bunch, said, “As the Community Research Partnership Study aims to better understand COVID-19, Greater Gift wanted to honor the participants’ selfless gift by helping the people in our community who are struggling with food insecurity during this pandemic.”

About Greater Gift ( Greater Gift is a non-profit organization, founded in 2010, with a mission to increase awareness of clinical research, especially among underrepresented communities, to improve global health. Greater Gift builds bridges with
underrepresented communities to engage them in research, ensure equal representation in
clinical research and to increase access to research as an option for medical care. Since its founding, Greater Gift has honored 130,000 clinical trial volunteers by making donations in their honor of vaccines and meals to children in need.

About Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwestern NC: Second Harvest Food Bank focuses on addressing the immediate need for food assistance, as well as the root causes of food insecurity and poverty. It serves 18 Northwest North Carolina counties as a vital source of food and support services for 430+ local food assistance programs. In the wake of COVID-19, Second Harvest has helped provide safe access to food resources for the most vulnerable members of our community.

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