ALIVE! Receives $1.5 Million for Community Project Funding Request
Funding to Purchase Food Warehouse Space To Alleviate the Suffering Caused by Food Insecurity
Alexandria, VA: Last week, the Senate and House voted and passed the year-long federal government funding bill which includes $1.5 million dollars for ALIVE!’s Community Project Funding Request. This $1.5 million investment amounts to the largest one-time commitment of funds in ALIVE!’s 50 year history and will allow ALIVE! to secure a dedicated warehouse to store and distribute food to Alexandria residents in need. Congressman Don Beyer (VA-8), was instrumental in advocating for funding to provide funding for a permanent Food Resource Center to alleviate suffering caused by food insecurity, ensure a ready supply of food for emergencies, provide a warehouse facility to keep food ready and safe to eat, and a create a safe space for people to access food. Of the successful funding of this Community Project, Congressman Beyer said, “I’m incredibly proud of the work that volunteers and nonprofits do to ensure everyone in our community has access to food and other basic needs when they are in crisis. It’s my hope that this investment will help to alleviate the current strain experienced by food insecure families in Alexandria and that it will help to build resiliency in our social safety nets.”
Jennifer Ayers, Executive Director of ALIVE! had this to say about the project, “We are so incredibly grateful to the faith organizations, and city departments that have provided flex spaces for our food bank distributions in the past. I’d like to thank Congressman Beyer for his advocacy on behalf of the vulnerable communities we serve. Investments like this will have a huge impact on our organization’s ability to meet the lingering challenges of the pandemic that our community continues to face.”
During the pandemic, the City of Alexandria saw a huge increase in the number of people seeking food assistance, and this increased need has not receded to pre-pandemic levels. Currently, ALIVE! distributes free groceries (fresh produce, meat, eggs, bread, and dry goods) to nearly 4,000 Alexandria families each month. “I am so proud of the ways in which ALIVE!’s staff, committed volunteers, and member congregations have stepped up over the last few years to support the mission of the organization and help those who need it most in our community. With this investment, ALIVE! will be able to be a wider, stronger safety net for the residents of Alexandria,” said ALIVE! Board President, Mary Eileen Dixon.
In addition to the team of volunteers from the dedicated interfaith community, ALIVE! regularly partners with local businesses, schools, neighborhood groups, and city departments to collect donations at food drives, to sort and prepare collected items, and to help distribute bags of groceries to our neighbors. Jim Karlson, an active volunteer and ALIVE!’s Food Program Chair had this to say about the project, “I am excited for what this funding will mean for the residents of the City of Alexandria who experience food insecurity. For years, we’ve been fortunate to operate from donated warehouse spaces for the food donations and the food staples we purchase. This investment will allow ALIVE! to secure a dedicated space to store and distribute food and will greatly enhance the security and safety of the people we serve.”
For more than 50 years, ALIVE! has provided food, transitional housing, basic furniture and housewares, and emergency financial support to help families in crisis pay for medical bills and utilities and ultimately avoid eviction.
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