Z City Desk

‘Tis the Season of Service

Vice Mayor Amy Jackson with ALIVE! Board President, Executive Director Jennifer Ayers, and Town Crier as they recently kicked off ALIVE!’s 41st Annual StepALIVE! event on World Food Day (Oct.16) that exceeded their goal and raised $93,000 for our most vulnerable populations with housing, clothing, and food insecurities.

By Amy Jackson

Alexandria, VA – The Season of Thanksgiving is upon us. It brings the changing of the leaves, the scent of nostalgia in the air, and our feelings of gratitude for what we have been blessed to receive in our lives – and what we can give to others. Alexandria is a community that lives by intention, with purpose, and takes care of its own. For that, I am truly grateful.

Recently, City Council presented a proclamation recognizing substance-abuse awareness week in partnership with Alexandria City Public Schools. Another created a call to action to assist in mitigating food insecurity issues for over 13,000 residents of our city.

City Council voted receipt and approval of docket items that reallocated funding needed for grant applications for small, minority-owned businesses in need, adopted a flag policy resolution that will provide our legislative body with guidance on how Alexandria promotes awareness of approved causes with designated flags, reviewed an ARPA funds update, and received the annual reports of many city commissions and boards that highlight the vast array of the collective effort by our appointments – volunteerism in its purest form.

Helping their Hometown: Vice Mayor Amy Jackson with Commonwealth Attorney Bryan Porter and his brother Scott Porter as they volunteer to distribute Meals on Wheels for Senior Services of Alexandria.

The outpouring of time and dedication of these community members does not go unnoticed. I am thankful for their continued service and commitment in this way.

On many levels, nonprofits partner with our city and public schools, creating the network of volunteers and resources necessary to assist children, youth, seniors, and families that need help. Like three prongs of a stool, each relies on the others for balance and support.

As we look to the first “almost normal” holiday season since the pandemic, we rely on that balance and support more than ever. As optimistic as we are on the health front, the pandemic still causes ripples in our economic recovery (jobs, housing, and hunger).

Again, I am grateful for our community that comes together for those in need. Any time and resources you can contribute to others during this moment would be a welcome relief, and those in need would be forever thankful for your kindness, compassion, and generosity.

Sharing is caring, Alexandria. Thank you for continually stepping up and doing just that. I wish you all a safe, happy, and healthy Thanksgiving!

Vice Mayor Amy Jackson, a career educator, is currently serving her second term on the Alexandria City Council. Raised in Alexandria, she is the first ACHS (TCW) “Lady Titan” to hold a seat as an Alexandria City Councilwoman and now as Vice Mayor. She currently lives in the West End with her husband and two children, who attend ACPS.

Alexandria Helping Alexandrians

ALIVE! www.alive-inc.org/food-program-in-alexandria-virginia/

Hunger Free Alexandria www.hungerfreealexandria.com/

Senior Services of Alexandria (Meals on Wheels) seniorservicesalex.org/

Volunteer Alexandria www.volunteeralexandria.org/

The Fund for Alexandria’s Child www.alexandriava.gov/TheFundForAlexChild

The Center for Alexandria’s Children centerforalexandriaschildren.org/

The Campagna Center www.campagnacenter.org/

More Information on the City of Alexandria Basic Needs Resources: www.alexandriava.gov/economic-support/basic-need-resources-for-those-impacted-by-the-covid-19-pandemic

Vice Mayor Amy Jackson last year at the 2021 Del Ray Turkey Trot. ALIVE! will collect food during Del Ray Turkey Trot packet pick-up times and on Thanksgiving morning, which is race day!

Alexandria Recurring Income for Success and Equity (ARISE) is the City of Alexandria’s guaranteed income pilot study. ARISE will provide a $500.00 monthly payment to 170 randomly selected participants for 24 months. Learn who is eligible to apply: www.alexandriava.gov/ARISE

City of Alexandria Eviction Prevention Resources: www.alexandriava.gov/economic-support/covid-19-eviction-prevention-programs-and-resources

Alexandria City Public Schools www.acps.k12.va.us/

ACT for Alexandria Covid-19 Resilience Fund www.givegab.com/campaigns/actnowcovid19fund

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