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Donor Credits Older Adult Neighbors With Spurring His Giving

Dr. Matthew Krecic turned from volunteering to giving back to help seniors.

Donor Matthew Krecic, a veterinarian who lives in Chicago, tells why he donates to AARP Foundation to help seniors in need:

I think it all started with George and Vera. They were our next-door neighbors when I was growing up in Cleveland and were like pseudo-grandparents. They sometimes took care of me and my brothers and I enjoyed helping them with their garden every summer. They were the kindest people. 

Then five years ago, I saw an AARP Foundation Drive to End Hunger commercial on television that changed everything. The ad showed an older woman at the grocery store buying milk and bread. So, at first, you think she’s just picking up a couple things she ran out of for the week. But then they tell you, she’s only buying bread and milk because that’s all she can afford.

The message hit me hard and I knew I had to do something. It’s just not right for so many older adults in our country to have to skimp on food. So, I wrote a check to AARP Foundation and it felt good.

But I wanted to do more than write a check. So, I volunteered to pack meals during AARP Foundation’s annual Celebration of Service in Washington, DC. It was exhilarating to work with all the other volunteers to pack a million meals for hungry seniors in a day. There was so much camaraderie and enthusiasm and I came back three years in a row.

It confirmed for me that AARP Foundation is an organization that doesn’t just talk about helping, they really roll up their sleeves and do the work. And I love that by writing one check, I don’t just help seniors who are struggling with hunger. . . . I also help reduce senior isolation, support jobs for older adults, and more.

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George and Vera lived into their 90s and passed a few years back. When I donate to AARP Foundation, I like to think I’m investing in people just like them — who have an incredible impact on everyone whose lives they touch..

Read more stories about how our programs have helped people find hope, and about the volunteers who give so much of themselves to help others. 


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