Volunteers Collect 8.5 Tons of Food for Students

Food For Neighbors kicked off the 2021-2022 school year on Sept. 11 with huge food collections and sorting events at five Northern Virginia locations, including Sterling.

The nonprofit collected more than 17,000 pounds of food from over 1,100 households. The donations will be distributed to students in 24 schools in Fairfax County and Loudoun County. During the event, Food For Neighbors Co-founder Karen Joseph recognized the nonprofit’s five-year anniversary and thanked the many Sterling-area volunteers, organizations, and participating schools for their support.

“We knew we had to make this happen,” said Liz Campbell, who serves as the Sterling area manager and oversees a leadership team that includes Jennifer Cave, Sara Farbry, and Meridith and Mike Blake. “We were fortunate to have the steadfast support of wonderful volunteers and organizations, including Riverside Presbyterian Church and the Sterling Rotary, both of which do so much in the community.”

The Sterling Area has grown to include 12 volunteer drivers collecting food from up to 182 households. The Sterling team is supporting students at six middle schools and high schools: Sterling, Seneca Ridge, and River Bend middle schools, and Park View and Potomac Falls and Stone Bridge, high schools. At these schools, social workers, counselors, and/or parent liaisons connect food insecure students with the collected and sorted supplemental food as well as with grocery store gift cards.

Community members may make monetary contributions, sign up to donate food, and express interest in volunteering atfoodforneighbors.org/get-involved/. Businesses and organizations interested in becoming Food For Neighbors partners, may contact Renee Maxwell,renee@foodforneighbors.org.

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