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AARP Makes 9/11 Day to Feed the Hungry in Virginia, D.C.

AARP is recruiting volunteers to pack one million meals for hungry seniors on the National Mall on Sept. 11. The Virginia AARP is kicking off a statewide food drive the same day. Graphic courtesy AARP.
AARP is recruiting volunteers to pack one million meals for hungry seniors on the National Mall on Sept. 11. The Virginia AARP is kicking off a statewide food drive the same day. Graphic courtesy AARP.
September 10, 2015

RICHMOND, Va. – AARP is marking the 14th anniversary of 9/11 by feeding the hungry in Virginia and in the nation's capital.

The Virginia AARP kicks off its 10-day statewide food drive on Friday, and the AARP Foundation is recruiting thousands of volunteers to pack one million meals on the National Mall all day on Sept. 11.

Lisa Marsh Ryerson, AARP Foundation president, says AARP chose to make this a big event to be part of the 9/11 National Day of Service. She adds there are a lot of seniors, including vets, going hungry in the D.C. area.

"It is big scale, and it's a serious problem," she says. "There's room for everyone who's listening and all of their friends and neighbors."

Ginger Thompson with AARP Virginia says they expect donations to surpass 100,000 pounds of non-perishable food during their annual September food drive. She says this is an important source of help for the state's feeding programs.

"The great thing is, the food goes to help your local community, local food banks and local food pantries," says Thompson. "So if you donate in your community the food stays in your community and helps your neighbors."

The 9/11 National Day of Service is intended to mark the nation's tragic anniversary with unity and solidarity. Ryerson says they wanted to do something in line with the spirit of the day.

"We wanted the event to have the scale of what we know is the desire of friends and neighbors to get together and help others," she says. "And for this event to match the importance of the national day of service."

Ryerson stresses that while their volunteers will be doing a great deal of good, they are also expected to have fun. She says volunteers will receive a t-shirt they can wear with pride.

More information about the million meal pack on the mall is available at the website for A Celebration of Service, at acelebrationofservice2015.org.

Donation sites for the AARP Virginia state food drive can be found at the Create the Good website at createthegood.org, or by calling 211.

Dan Heyman, Public News Service - VA