One of the greatest misconceptions about retirement communities is that they are secluded environments, with less and less interaction with the world that lies just beyond their borders. This could not be less true of Arbor Acres, as demonstrated by the residents who live here and their dedication to making a difference.
Every other year, the residents of Arbor Acres select a philanthropic cause in the greater Winston-Salem community to support. This is no small decision; in 2021, many suggestions were put forth for the next campaign. While there is no shortage of worthy causes, the vote concluded that the next recipient of Arbor Acres residents’ philanthropic endeavors would be the Forsyth County Backpack Program.
Residents Joe and Sally Todd, who are spearheading this effort, congregated a group of dedicated individuals to set a goal and plan various aspects of an effective fundraising campaign. This campaign is geared to meet (or exceed) the ambitious goal of $75,000 to purchase food for the schoolchildren of Forsyth County who do not have reliable sources of food outside school-provided meals.
What makes this year’s campaign unique? While the monetary value cannot be understated for the children who will benefit from it, Joe & Sally, working jointly with the president of the Forsyth Backpack Program Carol Templeton, have found other meaningful ways to increase Arbor Acres’ contributions to the program.
At the end of June, a “Backpack Blitz” was held on campus, where anyone was welcome to come help pack dozens and dozens of bags of food! Volunteers continuously showed up to join the assembly line of food packaging. Their many hands made light work of the day; most teams finished earlier than anticipated. When the dust settled, about 200 bags of food had been packaged for Kimberly Park Elementary School on Cherry Street.
This may be the answer to the question posed previously: what makes this campaign unique is that it has already given back to our own community through the opportunity to support a common cause by combining monetary and manual efforts, with a splash of fun and camaraderie.
As of the writing of this article, Arbor Acres residents have raised $58,129 for the Forsyth County Backpack Program. The campaign officially ends in October 2022.