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Press Release


Media Contact: Cheryl Monkhouse
404-842-8516
cheryl.monkhouse@wellpoint.com

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia Donates $10,000 to Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless for Flood Relief Efforts in Georgia

ATLANTA - Oct. 1, 2009 - Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia (BCBSGA) today announced it is donating $10,000 to Hosea Feed the Hungry (HFTH) for the Georgia Flood Relief Effort. In addition, BCBSGA associates are collecting canned goods throughout the week to provide immediate support to families who have been either temporarily or permanently displaced from their homes.

Strong rains over the course of the past week in Georgia have caused widespread flooding and damage, leaving many families without even the most basic of essentials. HFTH's staff has been actively packaging and dispensing boxes of food items and hygiene kits to individuals and families in need throughout the metro Atlanta area and its surrounding counties.

"Our hearts go out to those affected by the storms and resulting flooding," said Monye Connolly, president of BCBSGA. "As a company, we are committed to making a difference in our communities, but as individuals, we have a responsibility to help others in need be they friends, family or complete strangers. BCBSGA and its associates are pleased to provide support to HFTH and all it does for the community, not only during times of disaster, but year-round."

The funds will be used for disaster relief as well as for direct services and intensive case management for the clients HFTH currently serves, many who are also flood victims. HFTH will be celebrating its 40th year of helping the working poor and others as it kicks off the upcoming holiday season - from its annual Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday and Easter feasts, serving thousands of hungry Atlantans, to its daily dispensation of goods and human services to the needy in the Southeast and around the world.

"The recent storms have exacerbated an already critical situation because of the economy, and BCBSGA's support of HFTH and within the Atlanta community speaks volumes to its charitable giving," said HFTH's executive director, Elisabeth Omilami. "HFTH's financial contributions are down 35 percent, while calls for help from the community have increased 45 percent. The generosity of donors and volunteers can make all the difference during this critical time, and I am thrilled to have the continued support of BCBSGA and its associates in our relief efforts."


About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia:
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia, Inc. and Blue Cross and Blue Shield Healthcare Plan of Georgia, Inc. are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association® . The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia is available at www.bcbsga.com.

About Hosea Feed The Hungry
What began as a Thanksgiving meal, created by founder Rev. Hosea L. Williams, to show respect to Atlanta's homeless population in 1971 has grown to become, Hosea Feed The Hungry, one of the city's most vital resources that provides daily food and assistance to thousands of citizens who make up much of the South's Working Poor and Homeless. Last year, Hosea Feed the Hungry's on-going programming provided, among other things, over 3,000 individuals with food and assistance, prevented homelessness through rent and utility assistance for nearly 300 families and delivered more than 25,000 meals to senior citizens and homebound families. Hosea Feed the Hungry makes weekly visits to the streets of Atlanta to deliver food and assistance to individuals who are chronically homeless. Hosea Feed the Hungry also serves over 4,700 meals as part of Sunday church services and each year presents four major holiday food service events, which feed and assist, in total, over 40,000 people. For more information on Hosea Feed the Hungry, call 404-755-3353 or visit www.HoseaFeedTheHungry.com.

A community development project of the City of Atlanta funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through the Community Development of Block Grant program, the HOME Investment Partnership Grant program, the Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS program and the Emergency Shelter Grant program.

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