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ACT for Alexandria did it again.

Wednesday’s Spring2ACTion fundraiser — the largest single day of giving in Alexandria — broke the record set two years ago by collecting $2.9 million for 182 local nonprofits. The 13th annual event received more than 7,700 individual donations and ACT for Alexandria exceeded its goal of $2.5 million.

“Alexandria is an incredibly generous community,” ACT for Alexandria CEO Heather Peeler told ALXnow shortly after midnight. “People really want to give back and see our community thrive.”

The final tally keeps changing, as stragglers are allowed to donate on the Spring2ACTion website until Sunday, April 30.

Spring2ACTion is the main annual fundraiser for most of the participating nonprofits. The top three recipients are Move2Learn with $170,400, Casa Chirilagua with $167,994 and Carpenter’s Shelter with $91,938.

“They’re not doing the galas or the big events,” she said. “They’re using Spring2ACTion as a way to promote their organization, connect with donors, connect with local businesses, and raise critical funds.”

Peeler said that 75 Alexandria businesses also donated a portion of their proceeds toward the effort.

“It shows that Alexandra’s business community is is very connected to and supportive of the nonprofit community,” she said.

Peeler said that her staff of six employees are tired.

“We’re a little tired, to be honest, but we are super excited,” she said. “We have a tremendous sense of responsibility, because so many nonprofits really depend on Spring2ACTion for those donations to support their work.  It doesn’t happen overnight, even though it seems it all happens on one day. It’s many months of preparation in terms of connecting with potential donors, and providing training and opportunities for nonprofits to learn what they can do to have the best Spring2ACTion possible.”

Spring2ACTion has raised more than $20 million over the last 13 years.

Spring2ACTion Top 10:

  1. Move2Learn | Powered by Runningbrooke raised $170,400 from 174 donors
  2. Casa Chirilagua raised $167,994.79 from 327 donors
  3. Carpenter’s Shelter raised $91,938.53 from 289 donors
  4. Art League raised $83,214.50 from 205 donors
  5. The Alexandria Harmonizers raised $77,674 from 319 donors
  6. ALIVE! raised $74,756 from 423 donors
  7. Alexandria Tutoring Consortium raised $72,952 from 206 donors
  8. Alexandria Seaport Foundation raised $66,602 from 101 donors
  9. Friends of Guest House raised $62,833 from 141 donors
  10. Together We Bake raised $62,683 from 138 donors

Image via Running Brooke/Facebook

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Fibre space at 1319 Prince Street

A number of Alexandria businesses are donating a percentage of proceeds to local charities and nonprofits for this Wednesday’s Spring2ACTion fundraiser.

ACT for Alexandria’s goal this year is to raise $2.5 million from 10,000 donors for 185 participating nonprofits and charities.

Today, Piece Out Del Ray (2419 Mount Vernon Avenue) will conduct a bingo night from 7 to 9 p.m., with proceeds from $10 tickets benefiting Volunteer Alexandria.

“Come out for a fun night of BINGO and beer from Two Roads Brewing,” Piece Out Del Ray posted. “$5 drafts, food specials, beer swag and fun prizes. We will play 8 rounds of Bingo, so you have plenty of chances to win… Doors open at 5, and the first ball drops at 7.”

fibre space (1319 Prince Street) is extending its sample sale through Wednesday, and all proceeds will benefit Friends of Guest House, a nonprofit that helps women reenter society after prison.

“We do this once a year and it’s become a big hit since people always want to buy our shop samples and they aren’t usually for sale,” owner Danielle Romanetti told ALXnow.

Homegrown Restaurant Group has participated in the fundraiser since it began 13 years ago. Its six Alexandria restaurants will donate 10% of all sales to a number of charities and nonprofits.

“The HomeGrown Restaurant Group has been supporting ACT for Alexandria since the first year when John Porter strong-armed us into participating,” HRG co-owner “Mango” Mike Anderson told ALXnow. “Which has been the right move for us in supporting Alexandria. We encourage all Alexandrians to get on board this year and let’s make it a record year for ACT for Alexandria.”

HRG will donate 10% to from these locations to the following organizations:

Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap (401 E. Braddock Road) is also donating 15% of its proceeds Wednesday to AWLA.

Last year, ACT for Alexandria raised $2.65 million from 7,700 donors for 172 nonprofits. The top recipients last year were RunningBrooke, which took in $157,000 from 197 donors, Casa Chirilagua with $114,000 from 313 donors and Friends of Guest House with $112,000 from 180 donors.

Spring2ACTion officially starts at midnight on Wednesday (April 26).

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There are a number of ways to volunteer in Alexandria this fall.

Art lovers can get their fix by volunteering as gallery guides at the Torpedo Factory Art Center, and sports enthusiasts can become volunteer sport coaches. The Carlyle House also needs a volunteer tour guide.

There are also a number of tutoring and mentoring positions available, in addition to available food distributor and donation sorting positions.

“We need hundreds of people per week,” Volunteer Alexandria Executive Director Marion Brunken told ALXnow. “More people are in need now than ever.”

Here’s a list of Volunteer Alexandria’s new and upcoming opportunities.

  • Teach Kids to Read — “Wright to Read is a literacy tutoring-mentoring program that works to match volunteer tutor-mentors with Alexandria City Public School students who need extra support in their literacy skills. Our goal is not only to help give this child support along their reading journey (including access to books, resources, and a larger reading community), but also a mentor through elementary school and beyond.”
  • Distribute Food With ALIVE! — “Volunteers are needed to assist with multiple programs relating to their Food Program, ALIVE! House, and Alexandria Eviction Prevention Partnership Program will distribute food at Mobile Pop-ups and Truck to Trunk events, etc.”
  • More opportunities at ALIVE! — The nonprofit also needs drivers, a furniture moving attendant, and warehouse volunteers.
  • Theater group needs support — Momentum Collective is looking for a new board member, a costume designer and a set builder.
  • Youth Sport Coaches — Preside over team activities including all scheduled practices and games. Adhere to RPCA policies, rules and objectives Responsible for maintaining care of all RPCA Sports equipment. Lead by example among team parents to support the responsibilities of the referee and league leadership. Coach an assigned group of children and focus on skill development, safety, fair, play, sportsmanship and fun.”
  • 4-H Youth Development Club Volunteers — “We are currently looking for volunteers that would like to build clubs on any topic of interest, such as, dogs, sewing, robotics, or sports.”
  • Food Rescuer — “Food rescuers pick up surplus food from food donors in Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia (businesses, restaurants and grocers) and deliver it directly to receiving agencies (community kitchens, food pantries, etc.) that feed our hungry neighbors. In your own vehicle and on your own time, it usually takes only 30 to 60 minutes to complete this incredibly rewarding and essential mission. Get started on the website and app to see the complete schedule of local food rescue opportunities.”
  • Arise outreach volunteer — “ARISE is a new guaranteed income pilot program that plans to give $500 a month to 170 City of Alexandria residents for two years. A research team will evaluate the ARISE program outcomes which will inform future efforts and policy decisions.”
  • Sexual Assault Center Hotline Advocate — “Volunteers staff the 24-hour hotline on evenings and weekends. Volunteers provide accompaniment, emotional support, crisis intervention, advocacy, and referrals to empower survivors of sexual violence in person at the hospital/police department or over the phone. Volunteers must attend a 40-hour training.”
  • Shelter Supervisors with Alexandria Domestic Violence Program — “As a program that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, volunteers play a key role in providing services to those affected by domestic violence. Volunteers with our program interact personally with individuals in need–an opportunity that many find extremely fulfilling.”
  • Alexandria Library opportunities — The Alexandria Library needs a volunteer to run a games program for seniors, a volunteer with the Trash Trekkers program, a Knit Night volunteer, a computer class volunteer, and gardening support.
  • Tour Guide at Carlyle House Historic Park — “Looking for a fun and relaxing volunteer opportunity? Carlyle House Historic Park, a colonial house museum in Old Town Alexandria, seeks volunteer docents to give public tours of this historic building. Carlyle House, built in 1753, interprets the home and family of John Carlyle, a merchant and town founder.”
  • Sixth Annual Spooky Science Expo — “The Watergate at Landmark Youth Committee will be holding its sixth annual science event (Spooky Mad Science Expo) for kids and teens (October 15). The event will celebrate science and Halloween… As in every year, we are looking for volunteers to help us plan and run the event.”
  • Casa Chirilagua Volunteers — Casa Chirilagua is looking for one-on-one mentoring, their kids club, a volunteer to oversee the teen study hall, help with the high school program, a volunteer for teen bible study, and assistance with their middle school program.
  • Dog adoption event needs volunteers — “Lucky Dog Animal Rescue has an adoption event the FIRST Sunday of every month at the Potomac Yard PetSmart – 3351 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria, VA 22305. Come spend the afternoon with a Lucky Dog!”
  • Torpedo Factory Gallery Guide — “Gallery Guides must feel comfortable interacting with the public about the work at the exhibition with potentially sensitive content and handling artwork sale inquiries. Gallery Guides must be at least 18 years of age or older.”
  • Food and grocery volunteer — “For over 15+ years, as part of its Outreach Ministry, the Meade Memorial Episcopal Church has been committed to the Emergency Food Assistance Ministry, to help transform our community, our neighbors, and ourselves. The church provides lunches to residents from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. We need help to setup tables and distribute lunches every weekday, except on certain holidays. We are asking all volunteers to arrive at 11: 15 a.m.”
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There are still a number of ways to volunteer in Alexandria this summer.

Art and music lovers can get their fix by volunteering as gallery guides at the Torpedo Factory Art Center or as ushers with the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra.

As the upcoming school year gets in gear, there are also a number of tutoring and mentoring positions available, in addition to available food distributor and donation sorting positions.

“We need hundreds of people per week,” Volunteer Alexandria Executive Director Marion Brunken told ALXnow. “More people are in need now than ever.”

Here’s a list of Volunteer Alexandria’s new and upcoming opportunities.

  • Teach Kids to Read — “Wright to Read is a literacy tutoring-mentoring program that works to match volunteer tutor-mentors with Alexandria City Public School students who need extra support in their literacy skills. Our goal is not only to help give this child support along their reading journey (including access to books, resources, and a larger reading community), but also a mentor through elementary school and beyond.”
  • Distribute Food With ALIVE! — “Volunteers are needed to assist with multiple programs relating to their Food Program, ALIVE! House, and Alexandria Eviction Prevention Partnership Program will distribute food at Mobile Pop-ups and Truck to Trunk events, etc.”
  • Help Provide Meals to Children — “Alexandria City Public School (ACPS) will provide two days worth of breakfast and lunch meals with a snack pack free for any enrolled ACPS student on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Friday distribution will include a meal(s) for Saturday. Volunteers will meet at various schools to assist with packing boxes and loading buses with boxed meals. Then, volunteers will ride the bus along to distribute the meals while on site at a few ACPS mobile pop-up locations. Click on each location to sign up: Francis C. Hammond Middle School, Alexandria City High School, or Jefferson Houston School.”
  • Theater group needs support — Momentum Collective is looking for a new board member, a costume designer and a set builder.
  • Youth Sport Coaches — Preside over team activities including all scheduled practices and games. Adhere to RPCA policies, rules and objectives Responsible for maintaining care of all RPCA Sports equipment. Lead by example among team parents to support the responsibilities of the referee and league leadership. Coach an assigned group of children and focus on skill development, safety, fair, play, sportsmanship and fun.”
  • 4-H Youth Development Club Volunteers“We are currently looking for volunteers that would like to build clubs on any topic of interest, such as, dogs, sewing, robotics, or sports.”
  • Food Rescuer — “Food rescuers pick up surplus food from food donors in Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia (businesses, restaurants and grocers) and deliver it directly to receiving agencies (community kitchens, food pantries, etc.) that feed our hungry neighbors. In your own vehicle and on your own time, it usually takes only 30 to 60 minutes to complete this incredibly rewarding and essential mission. Get started on the website and app to see the complete schedule of local food rescue opportunities.”
  • Senior Services of Alexandria’s Meals on Wheels — “Meals on Wheels provides meals to seniors who are unable to leave their homes to shop, or have difficulty preparing a meal, to have two healthy meals a day delivered to their homes.”
  • Senior Services of Alexandria’s groceries to go – “Shop for and deliver groceries every other week to home-bound seniors who live within the City of Alexandria. You will be paired with a senior, who will provide you with their grocery list.”
  • Sexual Assault Center Hotline Advocate — “Volunteers staff the 24-hour hotline on evenings and weekends. Volunteers provide accompaniment, emotional support, crisis intervention, advocacy, and referrals to empower survivors of sexual violence in person at the hospital/police department or over the phone. Volunteers must attend a 40-hour training.”
  • Teacher positions at Friends of Guest House — “Friends of Guest House – Various Teacher Positions Dedicated volunteers needed to teach various subjects and skills classes to women. The ideal volunteer will be patient and interested in the success of these women as they further their knowledge. Volunteers are also needed to assist with vaccination pods and instruct substance abuse, addiction, and recovery classes. To register and learn more click HERE.”
  • Torpedo Factory Gallery Guide — “Gallery Guides must feel comfortable interacting with the public about the work at the exhibition with potentially sensitive content and handling artwork sale inquiries. Gallery Guides must be at least 18 years of age or older.”
  • Casa Chirilagua Volunteers — Casa Chirilagua is looking for one-on-one mentoring, their kids club, a volunteer to oversee the teen study hall, help with the high school program, a volunteer for teen bible study, and assistance with their middle school program.
  • ESL Parental Support — “We are looking for volunteers that will play, read and lead activities for children while their parent particapates in ESL. This program would take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10-noon. Parents will be present in the same room. All volunteers would need to be background checked and provide vaccination documentation.”
  • Weekly Garden Maintenance — “Volunteers needed to help with the maintenance of this beautiful 25-acre site on the Potomac River. Located just north of Mt. Vernon on the GW Parkway, River Farm is the headquarters for the American Horticultural Society, a national non-profit. Activities include planting, mulching, weeding, pruning, and any other garden-related weekly projects.”
  • Donations sorting — “Join the UpCycle team and help sort and prep donations to go out into the shop. UpCycle has a constantly evolving inventory of materials and supplies based on the donations we receive from businesses and residents, no two days are ever the same. Our Donations and Materials Handlers sort and shelve donations, assess the overall organization of the shop, and ensure that the donations we accept are clean and damage free.”
  • Learn & PlayGroup Flier Delivery — “Each week, we play, sing songs, read books, and learn together! This program is available for FREE to all City of Alexandria families with young children. But we need help getting the word out! We need volunteers willing to go to parks, grocery stores, laundromats, etc to post flyers so residents know it’s available! You will be provided with a list of locations and an area to distribute and post flyers to along with any supplies needed to post flyers. We need these distributed and posted a few weeks before our program year starts the week of August 29th.”
  • Alexandria Symphony Orchestra — “The ASO needs your help to usher at performances and perform other duties. You can watch the performance once patrons are seated. Come hear this great orchestra if you love symphony.”
  • Job counselor at Together We Bake — “Are you looking for a meaningful way to get involved with TWB? We are recruiting volunteers to act as Job Counselors for our upcoming sessions. This is a great opportunity to work one-on-one and build impactful relationships with Team Members while helping them discover and expand their career goals.”

Photo via Senior Services of Alexandria/Facebook

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Want to lend a helping hand? Alexandria is full of summer volunteer opportunities.

Volunteer Alexandria’s website lists plenty of ways for residents to give back.

Here’s a roundup of some of the opportunities this summer:

Distribute food for ALIVE! — “Assist ALIVE! feeding food insecure City of Alexandria residents in local Alexandria neighborhoods throughout the city during weekdays. Volunteer roles include bagbing food, handing out perishable and nonperishable items, breakdown after the distribution, load and unload the truck.”  Click Here to sign up.”

Sexual Assault Center hotline operator — “The Sexual Assault Center (SAC) offers support to victims of sexual assault and their families and friends. Trained volunteers and staff are available 24 hours a day to provide crisis intervention and emotional support, advocacy with medical, police, and court systems, short-term individual and group counseling, and information and referrals. In addition to services for individuals, the staff is also available to provide training, information, and presentations to local schools and organizations. The Sexual Assault Center offers information and support for sexual assault (i.e. rape, attempted rape, fondling, indecent exposure, etc.) survivors and their family and friends, sexual harassment and stalking victims, and individuals of any age, race, ethnicity, immigration status, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical ability, etc. Click HERE to learn more.”

Mentor for girls — “Space of Her Own is looking for mentors to build long lasting bonds with 9- to 11-year-olds through art projects after school.
Information sessions are scheduled at August 9 and 10 at the Lee Center. Click HERE to sign-up.”

Volunteer for Back to School Community Day — “On Saturday, August 27, UNCUT Youth needs volunteers to setup, breakdown, and provide support for their event – a day of food, games, raffles, and giveaways. Click HERE to sign-up.”

Youth sport coaches — “Coach an assigned group of children and focus on skill development, safety, fair, play, sportsmanship and fun. Work to esatblish and improve team unity and spirit. Click HERE to learn more.”

Tour guide at Carlyle House — “Carlyle House Historic Park, a colonial house museum in Old Town Alexandria, seeks volunteer docents to give public tours of the building. Carlyle House Docents commit to volunteering at least 2 weekday shifts per month or 1 weekend shift per month. Click HERE to express interest.”

Mentoring and tutoring at Casa Chirilagua — “The Arlandria-based organization Casa Chirilagua is seeking volunteers for its after-school programming. Click HERE for a full list of opportunities.”

Job counselor at Together We Bake — “Are you looking for a meaningful way to get involved with TWB? We are recruiting volunteers to act as Job Counselors for our upcoming sessions. This is a great opportunity to work one-on-one and build impactful relationships with Team Members while helping them discover and expand their career goals. Click HERE to learn more.”

Alexandria Symphony Orchestra concert volunteer — “The ASO needs your help to usher at performances and perform other duties. You can watch the performance once patrons are seated. Come hear this great orchestra if you love symphony. Click HERE to learn more.”

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(Updated at 1 p.m. on October 22) Matthew Ian Gillette, a pastor and well-regarded community advocate, died suddenly on Tuesday morning, October 19.

He was 39 years old, and the cause of death has not been released.

Gillette, who lived in the city’s Lynnhaven neighborhood, is survived by his wife, Abby, and their young daughter.

“Just a tragic loss,” said Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson. “Matt was someone with a deep and abiding faith, who saw his mission to help his community. We will miss him so much.”

Gillette was the director at the National Community Church in Potomac Yard, as well as co-chair of Hunger Free Alexandria and executive director of Restore Alexandria.

“Matt was a quiet, selfless force in our community,” said Bill Blackburn of the Homegrown Restaurant Group. “My heart aches for his young family.”

Gillette was also founded the Alexandria Gratitude Table at Meade Memorial Episcopal Church, providing free meals during Thanksgiving, and worked as a volunteer coordinator at Casa Chirilagua.

“It’s not just about putting something on a plate, but more about having a place where people can feel like they have a sense of community,” Gillette said of the Alexandria Gratitude Table in 2019.

Notes of shock and grief have also poured in through social media.

“For anyone who was blessed and lucky enough to know Matthew Ian Gillette, you know how unbelievable and devastating the news of his passing is to our community,” wrote Del Ray’s Gayle Reuter. “Whenever and wherever he saw a need, he was there to fill it.”

A GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $4,000 to support Gillette’s family.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been released.

Via Facebook

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There are dozens of volunteering opportunities in Alexandria.

“We need hundreds of people per week,” Volunteer Alexandria Executive Director Marion Brunken told ALXnow. “More people are in need now than ever.”

Here’s Volunteer Alexandria’s list of new and upcoming opportunities.

  • Alexandria Dept. of Community and Human Services Volunteer Guardian — “Looking for individuals who can assure the well-being of an incapacitated Alexandrian living in an Assisted Living Facility or Nursing Facility. Volunteer Guardians are appointed by the Court to make decisions for older Alexandria residents who have lost the capacity to understand the consequences of their decisions. The volunteer will visit the resident monthly and follow the person’s wishes as much as possible. To express interest, click HERE.”
  • ALIVE! — “Volunteers are needed to assist with multiple programs relating to their Food Program, ALIVE! House, and Alexandria Eviction Prevention Partnership Program will distribute food at Mobile Pop-ups and Truck to Trunk events, etc. Click HERE to learn about each opportunity and to register.”
  • ALIVE! Thursday Warehouse Volunteer — ALIVE! is looking for volunteers every Thursday. The role will consist of accepting deliveries, crating fruits and vegetables, shelving boxes, and all other tasks that may need to be done. Some tasks require lifting and/or moving possibly heavy items. Commitment to at least one Thursday a month is required. To express interest, click HERE.
  • Help Provide Meals to Children — “Alexandria City Public School (ACPS) will provide two days worth of breakfast and lunch meals with a snack pack free for any enrolled ACPS student on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Friday distribution will include a meal(s) for Saturday. Volunteers will meet at various schools to assist with packing boxes and loading buses with boxed meals. Then, volunteers will ride the bus along to distribute the meals while on site at a few ACPS mobile pop-up locations. Click on each location to sign up: Francis C. Hammond Middle School, Alexandria City High School, or Jefferson Houston School.”
  • ALX Fit Fair Volunteer — “Join in the ALX Fit Fair, a fun day in the park connecting the community of health and wellness businesses with fitness brands in mini-workouts and tasty samples! The event will begin at 10am and go until 2pm, but volunteers will be needed to set up an hour earlier and break down for up to 3pm. Energetic, health- focused individuals 16+ years of age who have a passion for fitness and the outdoors are needed to assist with registration, traffic control, directing people, and assigning raffle tickets. Click HERE for more information.”
  • Casa Chirilagua — “Casa Chirilagua needs volunteers to help tutor/mentor children and adults virtually and in-person during their Kids Club, Teen Club, Mentoring program, Spanish Tutor program, and Adult English Classes. To learn more click HERE.
  • Volunteer for the new DASH Network Launch — “DASH is looking for volunteers 18+ to interact and share
    information with riders about the New DASH Network during in-person pop-up events! After nearly two years of planning, outreach and community discussion, the New DASH Network is set to launch fare free on September 5th! The New DASH Network introduces more frequent, all-day service on major transit corridors in Old Town, Arlandria, Potomac Yard, Parkfairfax, the West End and the King Street corridor, and serves more low-income and minority residents. This new network will also provide access to 50,000 additional residents and nearly 25,000 additional jobs in Alexandria. Bilingual volunteers with conversational Spanish and Amharic would be a great help. All CDC mask wearing guidelines must be followed while participating in this event. To volunteer or find out more information about the new network, click HERE.”
  • Emergency Preparedness Outreach — “Help us recruit more passionate volunteers like you for our upcoming National Preparedness Month in September, our Snowbuddies Program in the winter, and all of our other emergency preparedness training programs! For more information or to sign up, click HERE.”
  • FACETS – Front Desk Volunteer at Alexandria Location — “Volunteers are needed to work at the front desk. Tasks include assisting clients, answering phone calls, receiving donations, data entry/filing, and maintaining the front desk and lobby of the office. Register HERE.”
  • Teacher positions at Friends of Guest House — “Friends of Guest House – Various Teacher Positions Dedicated volunteers needed to teach various subjects and skills classes to women. The ideal volunteer will be patient and interested in the success of these women as they further their knowledge. Volunteers are also needed to assist with vaccination pods and instruct substance abuse, addiction, and recovery classes. To register and learn more click HERE.”
  • National Preparedness Month Volunteers – “Interested in helping us plan, organize and execute events for National Preparedness Month? Join our planning team! No experience necessary just a passion for emergency preparedness. Click HERE to sign up!”
  • Repair Coach at Fixit Clinic – Kate Waller Barrett Library — The Barrett Branch Library is seeking volunteers to join in our first Fixit Clinic on Saturday, September 11 between 11am and 3pm. The Fixit Clinic is an opportunity to help your neighbors, teach skills for living all while keeping items out of the landfills and pushing against throwaway culture. We’re looking for skilled professionals and amateur craftspeople who work within the categories of small appliances, furniture, computers, electronics, clothing, jewelry, book and paper, bicycle repair and blade sharpening. Repair coaches not only will attempt to fix the items brought in, but will work with visitors to explain the process or encourage owners to attempt repairs themselves. To express interest, click HERE.
  • Create Salvation Army care packages — “We are collecting items for seniors and vulnerable populations. You can help by creating care packages from the security of your own home and safely dropping items at our locations. To express interest, click HERE.”
  • Senior Services of Alexandria’s groceries to go – “Shop for and deliver groceries every other week to home-bound seniors who live within the City of Alexandria. You will be paired with a senior, who will provide you with their grocery list. Further instructions will be provided to you once you've filled out the application, which involves a background check. To register click HERE.”
  • Senior Services of Alexandria’s Meals on Wheels — “Meals on Wheels provides meals to seniors who are unable to leave their homes to shop, or have difficulty preparing a meal, to have two healthy meals a day delivered to their homes. Click HERE to learn more and to register.”
  • Long Term Client Intake Case Workers — “Provide financial and logistical assistance to those in need of a Virginia state ID, needed to access housing, food assistance, jobs and more. While helping clients get IDs we also register them to vote and help others restore their voting rights. To register, click HERE.”
  • Space Of Her Own (SOHO) Mentoring for Girls — “SOHO is returning in-person for the 2021-2022 school year with a brand new class of 5th grade girls from under-resourced communities in Alexandria, Virginia, each waiting for a caring adult female mentor like you! Join us for an information session on either August 24 or 25 from 5:30-6:30 pm at The Art League Annex, at 1055 North Fairfax Street. To learn more, click HERE.
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The pandemic is over, right? Not for Volunteer Alexandria.

The nonprofit is still in the thick of finding volunteers to assist with food distributions, in addition to vaccination pod workers and guardians at assisted living facilities.

“We are actually seen a decrease in new people registering…only 114 people, which is really low for us,” Volunteer Alexandria’s Executive Director Marion Brunken told ALXnow. “We are still in need of people who are able to donate time to assist with food and meal distributions – ALIVE!, ACPS, and CASA Chirilagua all need people to assist.”

Brunken said there were 224 registered volunteers in April and 187 in March, and that she is now looking at a 30% shortage in school meal distribution volunteers.

“We need hundreds of people per week,” Brunken said. “Because, tutoring, mentoring — those are so important. Seniors always need food delivered, no matter if the pandemic is over or not. More people are in need now than ever. We still deliver food. We still have after school programs, and now we’re going to the summer camps, so we need to staff those as well.”

Register to volunteer here.

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Morning Notes

Volunteers needed at Casa Chirilagua — “Casa Chirilagua Volunteers are needed to help collect, sort, organize, and distribute donations. Casa Chirilagua needs volunteers to help tutor/mentor children and adults virtually and in-person during
their Kids Club, Teen Club, Mentoring program, Spanish Tutor program, and Adult English Classes.” [Volunteer Alexandria]

Bishop Ireton is raffling off a Ford Escape — “Want to win a brand new 2020 Ford Escape (courtesy of Ourisman Chrysler Jeep Dodge of Alexandria)? You’re in luck! We’re raffling off a brand new car to support the BI Annual Fund. There are only a few raffle tickets left so don’t delay!” [Facebook]

DASH bus drivers have spare face masks just in case — “#MaskUp for every DASH trip and while you wait for the bus. If you cannot delay your trip to obtain a mask, simply ask your operator for one when you board the bus.” [Facebook]

Former Mayor Silberberg on panel with Attorney General Mark Herring on Thursday— “Please Join Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring, Prince William County Supervisor Andrea Bailey, Fmr. Mayor of Alexandria Allison Silberberg, State Senator Ghazala Hashmi, State Senator Jennifer Boysko, and Delegate Wendy Gooditis for a Women’s History Month discussion.” [Facebook]

Stomping Ground closed Tuesday to get employees tested for coronavirus — “It is with the heaviest of hearts that we are reporting that a kitchen member on our staff has tested positive for COVID-19. Out of an abundance of caution we will be closed today to get our entire staff tested at both @stompbiscuits and @bageluprising and to sanitize buildings. It makes us wary as our team has gone and continues to go above and beyond recommended safety protocols. The city of Alexandria website does not require us to report it unless another employee tests positive. If that is the case we will continue to be transparent with our guests. Please be safe and we will keep you posted on our progress.” [Facebook]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy (during the day). High 58F. Winds light and variable… Light rain developing after midnight. Low near 45F. Winds light and variable. Chance of rain 60%.” [Weather.com]

New job: Sushi helper — “The Handover is hiring sushi assistants willing to work hard and be open to learning new skills. We are a small restaurant looking for candidates with the ability to accurately prep, cut vegetables, prepare maki rolls and follow chef’s direction. Both full- and part-time positions are available. Competitive hourly pay commensurate with experience level.” [Indeed]

New job: DASH bus mechanic — “Join the DASH team! DASH is seeking a B Mechanic to join our Maintenance team! We strongly encourage anyone interested to apply: https://bit.ly/3t4hUUa.” [Facebook]

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Morning Notes

Beyer Says Trump Defense Weak During Senate Impeachment Hearing — “The House Managers established that Trump lied about the election, inspired the attackers to come to DC, directed them to the Capitol, and did nothing for hours to stop their violent attack. Senate Republicans objected, strenuously, to details of a phone call. And nothing else.” [Twitter]

CVS Starts Offering COVID-19 Vaccines in Alexandria and Fairfax County — “People interested in a vaccine are allowed to register through both the city or county health departments and through CVS at the same time, but local health department officials are pleading with people who get their vaccine through CVS to remove themselves from the health department waiting lists so others can get vaccinated faster.” [Alexandria Living]

ALIVE! Free Food Distribution Canceled — “The ALIVE! Trunk to Trunk Food Distribution scheduled for February 13 has been CANCELED due to forecasted weather conditions and the safety of residents, staff and volunteers. Instead, the distribution events will take place on February 20 at the same locations and times.” [Twitter]

Stracci Pizza Truck Brings Roman-Style Pizza to Del Ray — “Thomas Cardarelli, chef and owner of Stracci Pizza, (pronounced stráh-chee) always wanted to start something of his own — a high-tech, casual pizzeria. Then, the pandemic hit. His friend asked: ‘Why not get a food truck?'” [Alexandria Living]

Travel + Leisure Profiles Manumission Tour Company — “Explore different stories in Alexandria Virginia’s history of slaves who ran away to freedom using the underground railroad. Join us as we walk around Alexandria Virginia with John Chapman from Manumission Tours and explore some of these historical moments.” [Youtube]

Casa Chirilagua Revamps Food Pantry — “Casa Chirilagua brings access to non-perishable food items and cleaning products to the community through our pantry. With new shelving and reorganization, we can now hold hundreds of pounds of food and cleaning products. So far we’ve distributed 2,241 grocery bags of pantry items, valued at over $196,000. This could not be possible without your support!” [Facebook]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy with a mixture of rain and snow in the morning. Temps nearly steady in the mid to upper 30s. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precip 70%… Cloudy (in the evening). Low 26F. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Real Estate Photographer — “Shoot anywhere from 2 to 4 properties per day.Deliver consistently excellent images up to company standards.Upload raw images to development services. Additional opportunities and pay are available for shooting night photography and weekends.” [Indeed]

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