The AARP team in Maine reached out to letter carrier coordinators and developed a strong relationship with the Bangor United Way to build awareness and participation. AARP Maine State Director Lori Parham appeared on local television newscasts in Portland and Bangor, emphasizing the threat of hunger in the state. The Maine office also achieved mentions in a wide variety of general and targeted media channels.
Drive to End Hunger grocery bags weren't distributed in New Jersey, but the state team used its energy and know-how to create awareness. It got the message out via its quarterly newsletter that reaches 180,000 recipients, its network of 76 state chapters, its busy calendar of community events, meetings and conferences, and one of the state's Spanish-language newspapers.
AARP North Carolina collaborated with letter carriers and food banks in Raleigh and Charlotte to host press conferences in each city, with Suzanne LaFollette-Black, associate state director-community outreach, describing the AARP and AARP Foundation contributions and presenting food insecurity data for North Carolina. Suzanne also represented AARP and AARP Foundation on a Raleigh television talk show, reaching an estimated audience of more than 600,000.
About 1 million grocery bags were distributed in the state. It turns out that the AARP sponsorship information printed on them was useful as well as promotional. More than 100 pounds of food donated by residents of a retirement community was missed by their postal carrier. They called AARP North Carolina because of the branding on the grocery bags and arrangements were made for a food bank to pick it up. A perfect example of AARP/AARP Foundation impact at the very local level.
Also of interest: Report — food insecurity among older adults.