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Health, Science & Environment

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow launches foundation to address food insecurity

 Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore.
Gail Burton
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore.

At his 2019 Heisman award speech, Joe Burrow spoke candidly about the reality of poverty in Southeast Ohio.

Burrow was raised in Athens County — which is one of the poorest counties in Ohio. After that speech, thousands of dollars poured into the Athens County Food Pantry.

Now, over $1.8 million has been donated to the Joe Burrow Hunger Relief Fund — a dedicated fund to provide supplemental and emergency food to residents in Athens County.

"So many of you made generous contributions to support food insecurity in Athens County, Ohio following my 2019 Heisman Trophy speech,” Burrow said in a statement. “We will build on our efforts to tackle food insecurity by also finding ways to offer up support in Greater Cincinnati, other parts of Ohio, Baton Rouge and Louisiana.”

Jimmy Burrow, the vice president of the foundation, and Joe’s dad, said the foundation will allow them to expand those efforts beyond Ohio.

“Everybody should be able to do good, and this is Joe's way of wanting to do good,” Jimmy Burrow said. “And this foundation allows us to branch out into not only other parts of southeast Ohio, but Cincinnati and Louisiana.”

The foundation will provide resources and support to underserved communities in Ohio and Louisiana — where Burrow played for Louisiana State University.

Some of the support will come in the form of providing funding for anti-hunger organizations, scholarships, or paying off children's medical bills for mental health treatments, according to Jimmy Burrow.

Joe Burrow will serve as president of the Foundation's executive board and Robin, Joe’s mom, will serve as secretary and treasurer.

Alejandro Figueroa is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Support for WYSO's reporting on food and food insecurity in the Miami Valley comes from the CareSource Foundation.
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Health, Science & Environment Joe BurrowFood InsecurityAthens
Alejandro Figueroa