Giving in a Bad Economy, Mayor Euille’s Unity Breakfast, Recognizing SCAN and More: This Week’s Latest ACTion

  • With the state of the economy, are you reconsidering giving to your favorite charities during the holidays? Jane Collins wrote an excellent column for her blog, Get Out and Give Back.  In it, she offers advice about donating despite the times.  Check it out!
  • Also read Collins’s coverage of Mayor Euille’s Unity Breakfast, an annual tradition that began in 2003.  ACT Executive Director John Porter attended, stressing to the crowd to remember that like the body’s need for exercise, philanthropy should be a constant activity because it enriches the community.
  • Find out about the work of Stop Child Abuse Now (SCAN) of Northern Virginia on the LocalKicks blog.  The 8th Annual Toast to Hope, held last month, raised funds for the various programs the foundation supports, which aid numerous children and families in the area.
  • Attention Alexandria Residents: The City wants to hear from you! If you would like to voice your opinion on transportation projects and priorities, be sure to attend this Wednesday’s meeting at Beatley Library from 7-9 PM.  For more information, visit the City’s Transportation Page or call (703) 746-4025.
  • Have a passion for the Arts? The Commission for the Arts is looking for volunteers with any experience or interest in literature, music and other forms to help make decisions on grants for the 2012 fiscal year.  To learn more, visit the Commission’s website or contact the Office of the Arts at (703) 746-5588.

1 in 6 Americans Depend on A Food Pantry

Food banks all over the country need help, this year more than ever.  According to a  recent NPR story, “More than 17-million households in the U.S. do not have access to enough food,”  and Feeding America reports that 1 in 6 Americans depend on a food pantry to get by; and the number of children relying on food banks in their network has increased 50% since 2006.

You can help!  There are many national organizations that let you donate online including the Global Foodbanking Network, Feeding America, the Salvation Army, and the United Way, or you can use an online tool to find a local food pantry that needs your help!  See the food pantry locater at

Locally, the Capital Area Food Bank serves the DC Metro area, delivering food assistance to an estimated 88,400 people each week from a food pantry, soup kitchen, or other agencies served by the Capital Area Food Bank like local charities including ALIVE! – 19,000 more than four years ago.

Shop at Food Matters Thursday to Support ALIVE!

On Thursday, November 18th, Food Matters in Cameron Station will donate 10% of its sales to ALIVE! in recognition of, and thanks to, the many ALIVE! volunteers who make a difference in our community day after day. Support a worth cause while enjoying farm fresh food and great live music

How You Can Help

Shop at Food Matters in Cameron Station tomorrow

When: Thursday, November 18th, 5:00pm to 10:00pm
Where: Food Matters in Cameron Station, 4906 Brenman Park Drive. Directions

Food Matters will also have live music (with no cover charge) of singer-songwriter Angie Miller from 6-8 p.m. Food Matters is located in the Cameron Station neighborhood of Alexandria at 4906 Brenman Park Drive. For more information, call Food Matters at 703-461-3663.

ALIVE! (ALexandrians InVolved Ecumenically) is a nonprofit organization that serves thousands of Alexandrians annually with shelter; low-cost early childhood education and childcare; financial help for rent, utilities, medical care and other critical needs; emergency food; and deliveries of donated furniture and houseware. More than 700 volunteers a year help ALIVE! fulfill the mission to put faith and love into action. Visit ALIVE!’s program overview page to learn more about their programs and how you can help.

Get Healthy Alexandria! Top of The Town Walk Around

“Children need models rather than critics.” Joseph Joubert

According to guest speaker Debra Kibbe, a pediatric diabetes expert from the International Life Sciences Institute and guest speaker at the Giving Circle of Alexandria’s fall forum on childhood obesity Wednesday night, parents modeling an active lifestyle and health eating habits is the most important factor in making sure their children grow up healthy.

Top of The Town Walk Around

This Saturday’s Top of the Town Walk Around event by the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria offers the perfect chance for families to get out and get moving together. In honor of Veteran’s Day, join Mayor Euille, Congressman Moran, and the Wounded Warriors to honor of all those who have served. The walk is an all ages event and includes a bunch of fun activities for people of all ages:

  • Walk the stairs of the Masonic Temple—whoever walks the most wins!
  • Meet firefighters and check out the fire truck!
  • Play games on the YMCA’s PhD moving playground!
  • Work out with CrossFit Old Town @ 10:00 & 10:30.
  • Potato Sack Races, Boot Camp and Dance Fusion with Fit2Be!
  • City official weigh-in!

When: Saturday, November 13. Registration starts at 8 a.m., walk begins at 9 a.m.
Where: Masonic Memorial Temple, 101 Callahan Drive
Who: Everyone!

Stay for awards, raffles, and other activities that will get you moving and having fun. The walk is part of Mayor Euille’s “Get Healthy Alexandria initiative.

America Recycles Day, Childhood ObesityForum, Transportation Planning and More: This Week’s Latest ACTion

  • The day after President Obama took office, Michelle Obama called attention to the issue of childhood obesity during a speech at the YMCA in Alexandria on the dangers of childhood obesity and introduced the Let’s Move campaign to raise a healthier generation of kids. According to INOVA statistics, 40% of Alexandria children are or are at risk of being overweight. The Giving Circle of Alexandria has responded to the First Lady’s challenge and is holding a free informative forum tonight addressing the issue of childhood obesity, with guest speaker Debra Kibbe, Director of Physical Activity & Nutrition at the International Life Science Institute. This event begins at 6:30pm, is open to the public, and will be at Atrium, Madison Building of the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, 600 Dulaney Street, Alexandria, VA 22314. RSVP to
  • On Thursday, November 11th, a free flu vaccine clinic will be held in the Auxiliary Gym  at T.C. Williams High School from 9 AM to 11:30 AM.  Parents or legal guardians may bring their children, ages four and older.  For more info, visit the Alexandria City Public Schools website.
  • Take part in America Recycles Day on Monday, November 15th!  Alexandria residents who take the America Recycles Day pledge will be eligible to win a “mystery” prize. To learn more, visit the City’s Solid Waste & Recycling page.
  • TheWashCycle’s blog has been doing a great job covering the City’s proposal to support the future transportation needs of Alexandria through the Transportation Add On Tax.  You can participate in scheduled meetings and submit your comments to the City on their public comment forum.
  • In related news, USDA Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan presented students at Cora Kelly Elementary with the HealthierUS School Challenge Gold Award “for their excellence in school nutrition.” The ceremony, which took place on November 8th, was attended by Mayor Euille and Councilman Krupicka.  The HUSSC is an important part of the First Lady’s campaign to combat childhood obesity.