The other day, I was driving in my car while tuned into NPR. I can’t even remember what exactly I was doing otherwise, but I had entered midway through the Kojo Nnamdi Show who, on that day, was interviewing Capital Area Food Bank CEO Radha Muthiah on the worsening food security crisis happening right here in the D.C. area. I was floored by some of the numbers she discussed…
D.C. area residents have been hit hard by unemployment and underemployment due to the effects of the ongoing COVID pandemic. Area food banks are reporting increases of up to 500 percent in demand of their services, with lines often leading down the block consisting of families and individuals who have never needed to rely on food bank services before. All this is happening while donations to food banks have dropped precipitously. Muthiah reports that normally, The Capital Area Food Bank relies on local groceries to provide up to 60 percent of their food supplies through charitable donations, but with the pandemic many of these grocers have stopped or lowered their donation threshold, resulting in a 75 percent decline in donation from corporate partners. That’s a lot of food missing from the food bank’s stores.
I was stunned by what she reported and immediately felt compelled to help. We have been so lucky to avoid much of the financial calamities facing our neighbors, and I think we owe it to the community to do more. Of course, in-kind donation centers are closed due to social distancing rules, so we have decided to run a virtual Food Drive! It’s quite simple in how it works. Each visiting client to our shop receives a confirmation in advance of her appointment. We detail instructions to donate in this email, and we are pledging to match monetary donations, up to $100 per visiting client. We are pleased to run our virtual food drive in conjunction with our ongoing pledge to donate 10 percent of each retail sale to the ACT for Alexandria COVID-19 Relief Fund, which is also providing much-needed assistance to our community in so many ways.
Of course, if you don’t have a need to visit us, we encourage you to make a donation anyway! Simply make a donation here if you are so inclined. They need all the help they can get. To learn more about how food insecurity has affected the D.C. area, I encourage you to check out this interview with Radha Muthiah (this is the segment that inspired me to start this initiative).
Alexandria & Company is an Old Town-based workshop and design studio specializing in creating and restoring fine jewelry and silver hollowware. They are the in-the-know jewelers of Alexandria and have been serving clients out of their small workshop for decades. Tucked in their historic building on South Royal Street, the team at Alx&Co. brings a personalized, modern approach to their craft – this is not your average stodgy jeweler or antique shop. Visit them during their walk-in hours or online to view their collection of handmade fine jewelry or to drop off a repair project; or, if you’re feeling creative, make an appointment to talk about that custom design project you’ve been imagining.
121-B South Royal Street
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
Design Studio Walk-In Hours (all jewelry services): Wednesday – Saturday 12-6pm
Silver Workshop Walk-In Hours (all silver repair and restoration services): Wednesday or Friday 12-6pm, or by appointment
Appointments encouraged for custom design.