The importance of volunteers cannot be overstated. Their gift of time throughout the year is vital to the work of the Capital Area Food Bank.
This past July, Dorothy Walsh, the Family Market leader at Alexandria’s Weyanoke Elementary School, was presented with the Virginia Parent Teacher Association (Elementary Division) Volunteer of the Year award for her help in coordinating the school’s Family Market. We thank both Judy and the Commonwealth of Virginia for prioritizing this vital service for the boys and girls in our community. In Northern Virginia alone, about 55,000 children live in food insecure households.
Family Markets, one of the CAFB’s direct distribution programs, are school-based food pantries where parents of students have easy access to nutritious foods for their families. Each month, Dorothy and her group of volunteers ensure that the dozens of families served by Weyanoke’s Family Market receive food.
“I just like doing it,” said Dorothy. “I love helping. It’s the person that I am.” Dorothy serves as the PTA secretary and has a 5th grader who attends Weyanoke. Dorothy actively recruits other parents to volunteer their time to help run the school’s Family Market.
“Volunteers come first” is Dorothy’s belief, and we couldn’t agree more.
Jeremi Mathis is the Capital Area Food Bank’s Family Markets Coordinator.