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Ameren Illinois backs JJK with $80,000 donation toward COVID efforts

Richard Mark, chairman and president of Ameren Illinois, left, and Brian Leonard,  senior director of Government Relations, Ameren Illinois, present Jackie Joyner-Kersee with a check for $80,000 to support underserved children in East St. Louis during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ameren Illinois President Richard J. Mark presented an $80,000 contribution to the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation on Monday, continuing a longstanding partnership to help under-served children in the East St. Louis area.

The pandemic has made the role of the Foundation even more critical to the children and families it supports. Since May 1, the Foundation has partnered with the State of Illinois and Illinois National Guard to provide drive-through and walk-up testing for COVID-19.

In partnership with the East St. Louis School District, the Foundation is providing grab-and-go bags containing breakfast and lunch. Staff members spend their afternoons preparing and delivering more than 175 dinners for students during the week.

“This year has been especially hard on families in the East St. Louis community as COVID-19 has changed the way we work and learn,” Joyner-Kersee said. “We’re so grateful to Richard and the team at Ameren Illinois for this generous donation. These kids and their families have had their world turned upside down because of the pandemic. This donation will ensure we can continue providing meals as well as give our kids the tools, resources and leadership instruction they need to reach their potential and succeed.”

Ameren Illinois has been a partner of the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation since 2013, donating nearly $400,000 over the years through the Ameren Cares program.

“We increased our contribution to Jackie’s foundation this year because in times like these we all need to come together and do our part to help our family, friends, neighbors and loved ones,” Mark said. “The Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation is a pillar of the East St. Louis community, and we’re so honored to support it on its mission – especially now, when these kids and families need it the most.”

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