People Brad Paisley

Kimberly Williams-Paisley and her husband, country star Brad Paisley, shown in 2017, have pledged to donate 1 million nutritional meals in various cities around the United States this month.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — After opening a free grocery store earlier this year, country music star Brad Paisley and his wife are expanding their efforts to fight hunger in America.

Paisley and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, have pledged to donate 1 million nutritional meals this month. The initiative, billed as the Million Meal Donation Tour, kicked off in Detroit last week.

The tour will run for two weeks, visiting food banks in 16 major cities including Los Angeles, New York, Houston, Atlanta, Miami and Nashville, Tennessee. It will end in Chicago on Sept. 21.

“We’re just rallying to feed people,” Paisley said in a recent interview.

The couple and their food brand, Tiller & Hatch, are working with Feeding America on the initiative. They are hoping to serve individuals and families who are experiencing food insecurities and financial hardship.

Williams-Paisley said they are grateful to be servants to the community during the coronavirus pandemic.

“So many of us feel helpless during this time,” she said. “We can’t solve all the problems. But to tackle this issue, it’s been really empowering.”

The couple’s new initiative comes after they opened their free grocery store called The Store in May in Nashville, to help needy families.

“Now it’s a matter of what’s happening and trying to figure out how to not let people fall through the cracks,” Paisley said. “It’s been a lot of people who have been poor for a long time. But then, there are others who were financially sound six months ago, but now have fallen on hard times. We are seeing this firsthand. We are trying to meet their needs.”

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